The Power Play in Tamil Nadu


With the Supreme Court verdict upholding a 2014 trial court judgement holding VK Sasikala (Chinnamma), two of her relatives and late J Jayalalithaa guilty in a disproportionate assets case, anarchy writ large in Tamil Nadu. Though the verdict has battered the long-cherished hope of Chinnamma to become “Amma”, it has also diminished the chances of O Panneerselvam (OPS) of continuing on the post of chief minister. However, the court order has come as a boon for E Palanisamy, as he has been elected as the leader of the AIADMK legislature party by the Sasikala faction. In the meantime, the BJP, which all-through has been making efforts to penetrate into the Dravidian bastion, saw a ray of hope in it and is engaged in fishing in the troubled waters.
The resignation of the caretaker chief minister O Panneerselvam and his subsequent revolt against Sasikala; playing the waiting game by Governor C Vidyasagar Rao, who put the most important issue on the back burner; and the Apex Court verdict against Sasikala in the DA case, delivered at a time when the state has been going through a political turmoil; indicate that the BJP government at the Centre has been at work behind the curtain. It is an open secret that the Centre has been siding with OPS during the turf war. The political developments in the state clearly show that no elected government can function effectively in such a political scenario.
It was obvious, after the SC ban on Sasikala holding public office for ten years after her conviction, the OPS camp would get an upper hand but failing all the preconceptions she elected EK Palanisamy as the AIADMK legislature party leader and expelled OPS and his supporters from the party.
Now, since there are two claimants – EK Palanisami and O Panneerselvam – for the chief minister post, the only democratic way out is to invite both the parties to prove their majority on the floor of the House. But, hoping against hope, the all-powerful BJP government at the Centre is waiting like a fox that looked at the grapes with longing eyes and licking his chops, to cash the political situation in Tamil Nadu, so that it could expand its base in the state.
The political crisis in the AIADMK also focuses on the lack of intraparty democracy in all political parties in India. In order to bring in more transparency, a uniform process has to be laid down for the election of Parliamentary Party Leader, Deputy Leader in Lok Sabha and Legislature Party Leader and Deputy Leader of any political party in legislative assemblies for all parties, involving the Election Commission.


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