Nation Politics 18 Feb 2017 Highlights of the sp ...

Highlights of the special TN Assembly session for confidence vote

Published Feb 18, 2017, 9:12 am IST
Updated Feb 18, 2017, 9:01 pm IST
In the open ballot, all 122 MLAs who had earlier pledged support to Palanisamy, voted in his favour.
Ruckus in Tamil Nadu Assembly during floor test. (Photo: ANI Twitter)
 Ruckus in Tamil Nadu Assembly during floor test. (Photo: ANI Twitter)

Chennai: With DMK and Congress absent from the Tamil Nadu Assembly, new Chief Minister and Sasikala pick Edappadi Palanisamy on Saturday won the vote of confidence, with 122 AIADMK MLAs voting in his favour.

Earlier, ruckus broke out in Tamil Nadu Assembly as a special session began or the key floor test on the confidence motion to be moved by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palanisamy.


The Speaker P Dhanapal walked out of the Assembly and the House was adjourned till 1 PM amid violence by DMK MLAs. Legislators tore papers, broke chairs and pulled off microphones after the Speaker rejected their demand of secret ballot in trust vote.

The Palanisamy camp had 122 MLAs in the 234-member House with one vacancy. Ailing DMK supremo M Karunanidhi was not present in the House.

Here are the highlights from the day's events:

  • DMK working president MK Stalin was held after he began a hunger strike at Marina beach.

  • After winning the trust vote, Palanisamy visited Jayalalithaa's memorial along with AIADMK ministers and MLAs, and paid tribute.


  • MK Stalin will go on a hunger strike at Chennai's Marina Beach against the trust vote, said ANI.

  • MK Stalin's meeting with the Governor at Raj Bhavan ends.

  • He also said that the MLAs who had voted against him would now have to answer to the people. OPS claimed that only the people could decide if the trust was valid.

  • The Speaker forcibly evicted DMK members from the house, against democratic values, said OPS.

  • "We tried for a secret ballot, but despite our efforts it was not possible," O Panneerselvam said after Palanisamy won the trust vote.
  • In the open ballot, all 122 MLAs who had earlier pledged support to Palanisamy, voted in his favour. 11 MLAs, who had pledged allegiance to Panneerselvam, voted against him.
  • After all 6 divisions of MLAs in Tamil Nadu Assembly vote in favour, CM Palanisamy wins vote of confidence.
  • Trust vote begins in Tamil Nadu Assembly. This is not a secret ballot. The DMK has gone to meet the Governor, and the Congress is also not in the House.
  • Speaker said that he has reconvened the Assembly despite the violence against him. "House will function only according to rules," he adds.
  • "We're going to meet the Governor to apprise him of the situation," says the DMK working president. He alleged that even his shirt was torn off in the Assembly, and reiterated a demand for a secret ballot.
  • Stalin alleged that the Speaker P Dhanpal tore off his shirt himself and blamed DMK MLAs for it.
  • MK Stalin was led away and his shirt was unbuttoned, indicating that he was also attacked during the scuffle.
  • Rapid Action Force troops on stand by outside Assembly, ready to assist Speaker if DMK MLAs resist eviction again.
  • Assembly security unable to evict DMK MLAs; Assembly adjourned again till 3 PM.
  • DMK MLAs begin protests outside the Assembly after being evicted; will sit on dharna inside Assembly premises.
  • DMK MLAs once against broke the Speaker's microphone.
  • DMK members surround the Speaker's chair as the House reassembles. Security is struggling to evict DMK MLAs.
  • After violence, Speaker order Assembly police to evict DMK MLAs from the House.
  • “You tore my shirt and insulted me,” Speaker Dhanapal tells DMK MLAs.
  • 2,000 police personnel stationed outside of Tamil Nadu Assembly.
  • Tamil Nadu Assembly proceedings begin after ruckus.
  • A House official has been taken out of the assembly on a stretcher.
  • Meeting of Chief Minister Palanisamy with senior minister is underway.
  • DMK is a violent and anti-national party. VK Sasikala is much better than DMK, says BJP leader Subramanian Swamy.
  • Amid ruckus, Speaker leaves the House escorted by marshals and Assembly is adjourned till 1 PM. An ambulance has been brought in.
  • DMK MLA Ku Ka Selvam sat on Speaker's chair in protest.
    DMK MLAs create ruckus
  • DMK MLAs tear paper, break chairs, speaker’s microphone and secretary’s table in the Assembly demanding secret ballot.
  • DMK MLA Poongothai Aladi Aruna climbs on the table and raises slogans demanding secret ballot.
    DMK MLAs create ruckus
  • DMK MLAs gherao Assembly Speaker Dhanapal, demand secret ballot.
  • MLAs should be given time to meet people of their constituencies and know their views, says Mylapore MLA R. Nataraj.
  • Indian Union Muslim League too demands secret ballot voting.
  • Nobody can interfere in my decision on how to vote, says P Dhanapal.
  • Congress MLAs too demand secret ballot.
  • People's voice should be heard and then only the floor test should be done in the assembly, says O Panneerselvam.
  • DMK's MK Stalin demands voting to be postponed. Democracy will be fulfilled, only when secret ballot voting is done, says Stalin.
  • No live telecast of Tamil Nadu Assembly proceedings. Audio speaker kept in Assembly press room has been disconnected.
    TN Assembly press room
  • Speaker rejects DMK’s request to postpone floor test.
  • Everyone knows that MLAs were kept in (Golden Bay resort) Koovathur. People's voice should be heard and then the floor test should be conducted, says Panneerselvam.
  • MK Stalin says floor test should be done on another day. Why the hurry when the Governor has given 15 days time?
  • Division voting begins, in 6 blocks each consisting of 38 MLAs. First block raises hands in favour of Palanisamy.
  • 230 MLAs present in the Assembly; halfway mark is now 115.
  • Speaker Dhanpal calls for order; division vote begins amid continued uproar.
  • Rejecting secret ballot, Assembly Speaker P. Dhanapal says the MLAs will be provided adequate security.
  • Ruckus breaks out in Tamil Nadu Assembly as DMK, Congress join Panneerselvam faction of AIADMK.
  • Chief Minister Palanisamy moves trust motion in Assembly.
  • Panneerselvam camp asks for secret ballot; Governor forwards request to Assembly Speaker.
  • Stalin says MLAs are being brought to the Secretariat like prisoners.
  • Congress to vote against Edappadi K Palaniswami government, says Tamil Nadu Congress Committee chief Su Thirunavakkarasar.
  • Congress MLAs reach Tamil Nadu Assembly for the trust vote.
  • The governor should have brought in President’s rule for at least 2-3 months so that normalcy could prevail and the MLAs were free, not under threat, says BV Acharya, special public prosecutor in the Sasikala DA case.
  • AIADMK MLAs, staying at Goldern Bay resort, reach Jayalalithaa memorial to pay respects ahead of the trust vote in Assembly.
  • Edappadi K Palanisamy and DMK Working President MK Stalin reach Secretariat for floor test.
  • Nataraj says he would vote against Palanisamy when the Assembly takes up the trust vote.
  • Arun Kumar decides to abstain from voting, says his decision is in sync with public opinion.
  • AIADMK Coimbatore North MLA Arun Kumar and Mylapore MLA R Nataraj leave Edapaddi Palanisamy camp.

The two factions of AIADMK and DMK had issued clear directions to its members and Congress has decided to vote against the Palanisamy government.


AIADMK had issued direction to all the 133 members barring Speaker P. Dhanapal to be present in the Assembly and support the motion. Minister O.S. Manian had warned that those who disobeyed the whip would be disqualified after due process.

Earlier, O. Panneerselvam’s camp had “removed” AIADMK general secretary V. K. Sasikala and her two relatives from the party for “going against its principles and ideals”.

Security has been beefed up in several parts of the state including Coimbatore and Chennai as WhatsApp messages asking people to gather for a protest in support of Panneerselvam were doing the rounds.


Constitutional experts had said the Governor should keep the Assembly in suspended animation and give a chance to another group which stakes claim to form the government.

Justice D. Hariparanthaman, former judge of the Madras high court, said “If Palaniswamy fails to prove his majority on the floor of the assembly in the vote of confidence, then the decision will be taken by the Governor with the consultation of the President of India”

He said “Normally, the Governor may keep the assembly in 'suspended animation' to enable any other group to form the government. If no group is able to form the government, then the assembly will be dissolved and elections will be held. In the meantime, President's Rule will be imposed under Article 356 of the Constitution”.