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EC: Two leaves symbol goes to EPS-OPS led AIADMK

24 November, 2017, 01:44 | Author: Joan Malone
  • EC: Two leaves symbol goes to EPS-OPS led AIADMK

The symbol was frozen by the Election Commission after both the Panneerselvam camp and Palaniswami camp, which have now merged, staked claim to it.

What might come as a setback for V Sasikala, who is now lodged in a Bengaluru prison, the Election Commission of India (ECI) declared that the 'two-leaves' party symbol belonged to the E Palaniswamy and O Panneerselvam faction and not the VK Sasikala-TTV Dinakaran camp.

This is being viewed as a big victory for the team headed by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O Panneerselvam, and a major setback for expelled party leaders V K Sasikala and T T V Dhinakaran.

The 83-page EC order relied mainly on the principle of higher legislative and organizational strength to allot the symbol.

On allegations that the judgement was awarded in their favour due to proximity with BJP, Palaniswami said, "Our side had more supporters and legislators".

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On Thursday the allied AIADMK has received the "two leaves" symbol from the Election Commission of India (ECI). "We are waiting to get the full order", former MP and party spokesperson K.C. Palaniswami said.

Mr Palaniswami was with the Sasikala-Dhinakaran faction then. The leaders had contended that Sasikala's appointment as the party general secretary was in gross violation of the provisions of the AIADMK constitution, as she did not fulfill the requirement of continuous membership of the party for five years. The official order from election commission is due later on Thursday. He also claimed that the symbol, the party flag etc should be given to the real AIADMK, which OPS claimed was with him and filed a petition.

In its order, the Election Commission said the EPS-OPS group enjoys the support of a majority of members, both in the organisational and legislature wings of the AIADMK.

Earlier, Palaniswami, Panneerselvam and other ministers distributed candies to party workers and journalists at the party office.

Alleging that the EC was biased towards the EPS-OPS faction and allegedly acted at the Centre's behest, Dinakaran said, "The Commission did not act neutrally". In contrast, only 20 MLAs (18 disqualified), and three MPs each of the two Houses had backed the group led by V.K. Sasikala, the jailed former aide of late Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.

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