Highlights: In power tussle, OPS, Sasikala meet Tamil Nadu Governor

Panneerselvam has declared he could prove majority on the floor of the House, but Sasikala claims support of most MLAs.

Chennai: From Poes Garden and Greenways Road, the residences of V K Sasikala and O Panneerselvam, the focus of the political crisis in Tamil Nadu shifted to the Raj Bhawan on Thursday evening as Governor CH Vidyasagar Rao arrived in Chennai to take stock of the situation.

Live Updates:

  • Panneerselvam met his supporters at his residence following his meeting with the Governor.

  • Sasikala, after presenting the signatures of her MLAs to Rao, left his Raj Bhawan residence.

  • Sasikala Natarajan has staked claim to form the government in Tamil Nadu, said the AIADMK's official Twitter handle.

  • 5 senior AIADMK leaders accompany Sasikala to meet Rao.

  • Sasikala reaches Raj Bhawan and meets Tamil Nadu Governor Vidyasagar Rao.

  • In a dramatic gesture, Sasikala placed the list of MLAs supporting her on Jayalalithaa's memorial and sought the deceased leader's blessings.

  • Sasikala places wreath of flowers on Jayalalithaa’s memorial. She is carrying a letter with the list of MLAs supporting her. It will be presented to the Governor.

  • The AIADMK general secretary reaches Jayalalithaa's memorial, to meet Vidayasagar Rao subsequently.

  • Sasikala's supporters gathered at Marina beach ahead of her visit to the memorial.

  • Sasikala left her Poes Garden residence and will visit Jayalalithaa's memorial before her meeting with Governor.

  • Sasikala loyalist and Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker Thambidurai met Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and claimed support of 130 MLAs. He requested the PM for an early swearing-in of Sasikala as Tamil Nadu CM.

  • "I briefed the Governor about the political developments in the state. I want to stress that dharma will win," Panneerselvam told the media.

  • “Truth will prevail. Good news will come soon,” Panneerselvam said.

  • Pannneerselvam told the Governor that he had been "pressured" to quit as CM.

  • After his meeting, OPS thanked all the MPs and MLAs who supported him. “With Amma's blessings and wishes, I met the governor with top leaders including Madhusudhan, and explained to him the situation,” Panneerselvam said.

  • Panneerselvam leaves Raj Bhawan after meeting the Governor
  • Panneerselvam, accompanied by 10 AIADMK leaders, meets Governor Rao at Raj Bhawan at 5 pm.
  • Panneerselvam earlier met Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary Girija Vaidyanathan and Director General of Police TK Rajendran at his residence.
  • Panneerselvam subsequently reached Raj Bhawan too, for his scheduled meeting with the Governor at 5 pm.
  • Vidyasagar Rao arrived at Raj Bhawan after landing at Chennai airport.

Rao met Chief Minister O Panneerselvam and then AIADMK General Secretary V K Sasikala.

While Rao met OPS at 5 pm, Sasikala's meeting with the Governor was scheduled for 7:30 pm.

Panneerselvam was expected to explain his charge that he was “forced and compelled” into tendering his resignation to the Governor. Sasikala will stake claim to form the government as her camp claims the support of 131 MLAs.

The Governor, sources say, has decided to wait till the Supreme Court delivers its verdict on the appeal filed by the Karnataka government against the acquittal of Sasikala and others in the Rs 66 crore disproportionate assets case.

The Governor, a political veteran who had his humble beginnings in the RSS and had worked with veterans like former Prime Minister A B Vajpayee, is unlikely to rush into any decision.

Eminent jurist Soli S Sorabjee had opined that Governor Rao should defer the swearing-in ceremony till the verdict.

If needed, the Governor will also consult legal experts in Chennai on the options before him. Another view is that the Governor should wait for the fight within the ruling party to recede and then call the leader who commands majority to form government.

While Panneerselvam has declared he could prove majority on the floor of the House, Sasikala says she can be sworn-in as Chief Minister since she enjoys majority in the AIADMK Legislature Party.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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