Move to oust EPS if AIADMK is drubbed

Chennai: A group of leaders in the AIADMK is reportedly planning to seek a change in leadership in the event of the party finishing behind the BJP in the Lok Sabha elections, whose results will be declared by June 4, with the sole aim of ousting the reigning general secretary, Edappadi K Palaniswami, by blaming him for the fiasco.

Though Palaniswami’s position in the party is otherwise firm with the leaders and functionaries in the lower rung fully backing him, there has been a talk of some senior leaders privately resenting the party breaking away from the BJP at the ‘wrong time’ and not fielding the right candidates for the April 19 elections.

Social media, particularly YouTube channels, is abuzz with the move to replace Palaniswami for quite some time. A former AIADMK MP, K C Palanisamy, in an interview to a YouTube channel, about five days back accused Palaniswami of not listening to anyone in the party and said that the intention of the leaders expressing resentment in private was not to shake Palaniswami’s hold in the party.

He said that people like him were concerned about the future of the party. Once the results were out, people would try to blame Palaniswami by adding up the votes polled by the AIADMK and BJP and pointing out that if they had fought the elections together they would have done better, he said, adding that it was wrong to look at it that way.

However, many self-styled political analysts too have started going on social media channels by pointing fingers at Palaniswami’s ‘wrong decisions’ even without knowing the outcome of the elections. Since one of the schemes of things advocated was the reunion of the old AIADMK, which in other words meant that V K Sasikala, T T V Dinakaran and O Panneerselvam should be brought into the party fold.

Sasikala, who had been vocal about that idea since her release from jail, had recently written to party functionaries at the middle and lower levels to push for unity. It is also learnt that one of her acolytes Vaithlingam was canvassing with many leaders for bringing all the disparate leaders of AIADMK together to put up a strong fight against the DMK and BJP.

In fact, those blaming Palaniswami for alleged goofing up in the elections are also blaming the speculated growth of the BJP in the State on him. They feel that the BJP would have not taken the bold step to go it all out on its own if the AIADMK had not snapped ties at what they say was an ‘inappropriate moment.’

So those advocating a change in leadership are referring to the 2026 Assembly elections and saying that the party could not be left to be helmed by Palaniswami in those crucial polls that would give the party an opportunity to return to power. Palaniswami would have failed the party 10 times by then – the Lok Sabha elections is the 10th election the party faced under his leadership – and yet another risk could not be taken, they claimed.

Despite all the undercurrents in the party’s higher echelons, at the grassroots level Palaniswami was having a firm hold, some of his supporters claimed. So even if the demand for a general council meeting was made by those seeking to oust Palaniswami, it would not have any perceptible impact as he would win the voting in the general council, they said.

Whatever it would be, as of now everyone in the party is keeping mum and waiting for the election results as the issue was likely to be raised only in the event of the AIADMK finishing third behind the BJP both in terms of vote percentage and in its overall position in the 40 constituencies.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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