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  • Deccan Chronicle

AIADMK might boycott session if OPS is treated as deputy leader

Chennai: The AIADMK group led by leader of the opposition, Edappadi K Palaniswami, might boycott the Assembly session, starting on Monday if the Speaker M Appavu refuses to consider their request and change the seating arrangement for R B Udhayakumar by recognizing his appointment as the deputy leader of the opposition.

While Appavu had said that since both the factions had given letters to him – Palaniswami group saying that Udhayakumar had been made the new deputy leader replacing O Panneerselvam who had been expelled from the party and Panneerselvam claiming that he continued to the coordinator of the party - he would take a decision after looking into the matter closely.

It is learnt that since the matter relating to the split in the AIADMK has not been legally resolved with a case still pending in the Supreme Court, the Speaker might choose to wait for the verdict to take a final decision on the dispute and not disturb Panneerselvam from this present place.

But since the seating arrangement is such that both the leader and deputy leader of the opposition sit on the single double seater sofa opposite to the Chief Minister’s chair, Palaniswami is keen on not sitting next to his bete noire in the House.

So, if the Speaker does not change the seat of Panneerselvam, who as former Chief Minister would anyway be entitled for a place in the front row, the AIADMK members might not attend the Assembly in protest against the Speaker not heeding to their request.

Palansiswami also wrote a letter to his party cadre on Saturday in commemoration of the AIADMK completing 50 years on Monday, saying a political path would always be laden with thorns, stones, betrayals, jealousies, conspiracies and rivalries and not one filled with roses.

He made use of the opportunity to launch a scathing attack on the ruling DMK, alleging that there were four Chief Ministers and that the government was against the people.

Reiterating the party’s commitment to ensure that Hindi was not imposed in the State, Palaniswami said that the DMK was using the language issue to gain votes and that it was used to divert the attention of the people.

Accusing the DMK of not honouring its election promises, he said that the AIADMK was prepared to face the elections anytime and urged the cadre to strive for the welfare of the people since their party alone could work for the people.

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