Pannerselvam hits back at Sasikala, says smiling 'not a crime'

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

Chennai (Tamil Nadu) [India], Feb. 8 (ANI): Moments after All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam's (AIADMK) legislative leader V.K. Sasikala addressed the media outside her Poes Garden residence and said the party will 'surely' remove O. Pannerselvam from all positions in the party, the incumbent Chief Minister hit back and said nobody can take the post of treasurer from him as he was appointed by late J. Jayalalithaa ten years back. "I was appointed as treasurer of the party by Amma 10 years ago. No one has the right to remove me from that post," Pannerselvam took to Twitter to express his point of view. "My future course of action will reflect the mindset of the people and AIADMK cadre," he added. The midnight drama in the AIADMK unfolded minutes after Pannerselvam was removed from the post of the party's treasurer. Sasikala waved and flashed victory sign to her supporters at her Poes Garden residence and said she had not forced Pannerselvam for anything. Sasikala held the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) responsible for the upheaval in their party and said she saw the opposition party leader and Pannerselvam exchanging smile and warmth in a recent assembly session. Pannerselvam retorted to the sardonic remarks and tweeted that smiling wasn't a crime. "Looking at opposition leader and smiling at them isn't a crime. The biggest difference between human beings and animals is that only humans can smile," he said. "I am a staunch follower of AIADMK and will remain so, wait and see what will happen tomorrow," he added. Pannerselvam also tweeted that he will brief the press early morning at eight. In a rather shocking turn of events, Sasikala removed Pannerselvam from the post of the party's treasurer after he openly revolted at the memorial of J. Jayalalithaa and said that he was forced to resign from the post. He is replaced by former member of parliament Dindigul Sreenivasan. Earlier, an emergency meeting of top AIADMK leaders was called at Sasikala's residence following Pannerselvam's surprise visit to Jayalalithaa's memorial on Marina beach in Chennai and meditation at the grave of his political guru. Dropping unannounced at the beach, Pannerselvam earlier in the day set tongues wagging by meditating near his predecessor Jayalalithaa's memorial and then proceeding to tear into Sasikala. The surprise visit set speculations rife over his decision to give up his post as Chief Minister, as many pondered if he was silently protesting against the current developments in the state or simply praying before Amma. After almost 30 minutes, Pannerselvam finally broke the suspense by getting up from his meditating stance and proceeding to speak to the media. "There are some truths that I want to tell to my party cadre and to the people of this country. I have performed my duty without any shortcomings and carried forward path shown by Amma. When she (Jayalalithaa) was in the hospital, she (asked me to take over as Chief Minister. I was told that I have to save the party and the state. I was given the post but was then insulted continuously," the interim Chief Minister said. He then dropped a bombshell by proceeding to say that he was presently being forced to step down from his post and pave way for Sasikala, revealing that Revenue Minister R B Udhayakumar, has suggested Sasikala to take over his post. He further went on to assert that he will even take back his resignation if party workers and the people of the state want him to. (ANI)