Pannerselvam pays price for revolt against Sasikala, gets sacked as AIADMK's treasurer

| Updated: Aug 23, 2017 11:20 IST

Chennai (Tamil Nadu) [India], Feb. 8 (ANI): In a rather shocking turn of events, All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam's (AIADMK) leader of legislative party VK Sasikala has removed the incumbent Chief Minister O. 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 has been called at Sasikala's residence following Panneerselvam'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, Panneerselvam 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, Panneerselvam 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. "The question of Sasikala becoming Chief Minister came up during a meeting at her place. At the time I asked how this was even justified. However, the party leaders said I have to take an initiative towards making her the Chief Minister, and that's how I was forced to tender resignation," Panneerselvam said. 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. Meanwhile, sources have confirmed that Sasikala will not be sworn in as Tamil Nadu Chief Minister on Wednesday. Tamil Nadu Governor Vidyasagar Rao, who is in Mumbai at present, will not head to Chennai tomorrow and Panneerselvam is to remain interim Chief Minister until Rao examines legal implications regarding Sasikala's appointment. A Public Interest Litigation (PIL) was filed yesterday in the apex court seeking a stay over Sasikala's swearing-in, claiming that she had been convicted under the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, for amassing wealth disproportionate to her income. The petitioner said he filed the plea in the interest of people of Tamil Nadu and to maintain the peace in the state. Earlier, Rajya Sabha MP Sasikala Pushpa and AIADMK leader KC Palaniswamy had complained to the Election Commission of India (ECI) that Sasikala's appointment as the party's interim general secretary was carried out in an undemocratic manner. (ANI)