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AIADMK's TTV Dinakaran breaks silence after 60 days, says will unite rival factions under him

Breaking his silence after 60 days, AIADMK (Amma) deputy general secretary TTV Dinakaran spoke at a press conference in Chennai stating that both the E Palaniswamy (EPS) and O Paneerselvam (OPS) factions of the AIADMK will unite under him.

Dinakaran, who is VK Sasikala's nephew, likened the tussle between EPS and OPS factions to a fight among brothers. "This is a fight between two brothers. I urge the media not to politicise it. I will unite both the EPS and OPS factions," he said at a press conference on Friday. Dinakaran, however, alleged that some AIADMK ministers want to alienate him and oust him and his family from the party.

File image of AIADMK leader TTV Dhinakaran. PTI

File image of AIADMK leader TTV Dhinakaran. PTI

Dinakaran also said that no one asked him to leave. "We made Palaniswami the chief minister. AIADMK is my headquarters. No one can stop me from going to the office tomorrow (Saturday)," he added.

On Wednesday, a day after Dinakaran announced his return to active politics, he had gone to meet his aunt and party chief VK Sasikala at the Parappana Agrahara central prison. But Friday was the first time he addressed the media after 60 days of maintaining silence over the political tussle inside the party.

On the possibility of an alliance with NDA, Dinakaran said: "The alliance with NDA is premature. 2019 is far away."

Dinakaran, who recently got back to Tamil Nadu after spending 40-days in Tihar jail, said that the party will retain the two-leaves symbol. The Delhi Police had chargesheeted him along with Chandrashekar for allegedly conspiring to bribe Election Commission (EC) officials to get the symbol.

He also outlined plans of going across the length and breadth of Tamil Nadu to meet people, understand their emotions and problems from the grassroots level.

In this case, Dinakaran will need to catch up with EPS and OPS, who have been touring the entire state to gather support for themselves.

While Dinakaran's statements do not indicate a complete breakdown within the AIADMK, it hints at a possible emergence of three party factions each led by EPS, OPS and TTV Dinakaran.

As TS Sudhir argues in this Firstpost article, by announcing that he will enter the AIADMK head office, Dinakaran is trying to tell BJP that he is the one who matters. When OPS had opposed VK Sasikala's before she was pronounced guilty in the disproportionate assets case, the Mannargudi family had pushed Palaniswamy as their next chief minister and thus ensuring that power remains with Dinakaran. However, with EPS seeking BJP's support, Dinakaran was sidelined. The result was quite humiliating for Dinakaran whose support was not sought by the BJP for Ram Nath Kovind's race to Raisina Hills. He had to announce his support unilaterally.

Updated Date: Aug 04, 2017 21:35 PM

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