In the latest development in poll-bound Tamil Nadu, CM Edappadi Palaniswamy on Friday promised to withdraw cases lodged on participants in the anti-CAA protests in the state. Addressing a rally at Kadayanallur in Thenkasi on Friday, CM EPS vowed to withdraw all cases registered on individuals who had participated in protests against Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) along with taking back the cases on those who flouted COVID-19 lockdown guidelines. As per reports, an estimated 10 lakh cases are expected to be withdrawn if the AIADMK fulfils its promise.
"கொரோனா ஊரடங்கு காலத்தில் போடப்பட்ட விதிமீறல் வழக்குகள் அனைத்தும் வாபஸ்" - மாண்புமிகு முதலமைச்சர் திரு. எடப்பாடி கே. பழனிசாமி அவர்கள் அறிவிப்பு.— AIADMK (@AIADMKOfficial) February 19, 2021
Further, the AIADMK leader also announced that the government would consider withdrawing cases on persons who participated in Kudankulam against the setting up of a nuclear plant and that it would be done under the purview of the law. Earlier on Thursday, CM Edappadi took a dig at DMK supremo Stalin, pointing out to him that the CM post wasn't a commodity that could be purchased. Further, the AIADMK leader claimed that he rose to power in politics having come from a rural background while alleging that Stalin used his father's stature to come to power.
Meanwhile, former Jayalalithaa aide Sasikala has approached a civic court in Chennai challenging her removal as AIADMK's general secretary, as per reports. Sasikala, who was formally released from the Parappana Aghrahara prison in Bengaluru on January 27, was removed as AIADMK's general secretary in 2017 on Dy CM OPS' conditions laid out while merging his faction with CM EPS'. As per reports, Sasikala has moved to court to challenge her removal as AIADMK an office-bearer and the case has been listed for March 15.
The case was initially set to be heard before the Madras High Court but was transferred to a civil court, as per reports. While the petitioners in the case are Sasikala and her nephew & AMMK founder TTV Dhinakaran, the respondents named include CM Edappadi Palaniswami, Dy CM O Pannerselvam, Presidium Chairman E Madhusudanan, and a former AIADMK minister. Recently, TTV Dhinakaran defended the use of the AIADMK party flag on Sasikala's car and claimed that she was unanimously nominated as the party's general secretary in December 2016 and that this was their stance as the matter was being heard in the court.
The two warring factions in AIADMK - of Deputy CM O Pannerselvam (OPS) and CM E Palaniswamy (EPS), reconciled after the party named incumbent E Palaniswamy as its CM candidate and O Panneerselvam as the chief of the 11-member steering committee. With AIADMK announcing it will continue its national alliance with BJP, the saffron party is yet to officially announce its state-level alliance. Meanwhile, ex-CM Karunanidhi's successor - DMK chief MK Stalin eyes his maiden CM term as DMK cannot afford to lose a third straight Assembly election after sweeping the state in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls with 38 seats.