After poll debacle, ex-CM Panneerselvam calls for unity, but AIADMK rejects his call

AIADMK leader and former state Minister KP Munusamy, however, dismissed the appeal as nothing but an attempt to create confusion.

ByPTI

Published Jun 06, 2024 | 5:30 PMUpdatedJun 06, 2024 | 5:30 PM

Tamil Nadu former chief ministers O Panneerselvam and EK Palaniswami (Official Facebook Page, O Panneerselvam)

Former Tamil Nadu chief minister and ousted AIADMK leader O Panneerselvam on Thursday, 6 June, renewed his call to the AIADMK factions to reunite to strengthen the party, even as the AIADMK rejected his call saying he was only creating confusion.

Following his defeat in the Lok Sabha election from Ramanathapuram and with the AIADMK piloted by former chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami failing to secure even a single seat out of 39 constituencies in the state, Panneerselvam sought the retrieval of the AIADMK “by preparing to make sacrifices.”

He has been making such an appeal since the party’s reins went into the hands of Palaniswami.

Also Read: What’s common between NTR, Jayalalithaa and Chandrababu Naidu?

AIADMK dismisses the appeal

AIADMK leader and former state Minister KP Munusamy, however, dismissed the appeal as nothing but an attempt to create confusion.

“Panneerselvam has no right to talk about the party’s unity. He joined hands with the BJP to freeze the Two Leaves symbol of the AIADMK,” Munusamy told reporters responding to Panneerselvam’s appeal.

“It is easy to break a stick but difficult to break sticks in a bundle. This is a call to retrieve the AIADMK founded by late chief minister MG Ramachandran and nurtured by late chief minister J Jayalalithaa, for unity. Consoling cadres and making them get accustomed to defeat is a sin,” Panneerselvam said in his statement.

Though he had aligned with the BJP in the Lok Sabha elections, he chose to contest as an independent on the jackfruit symbol from Ramanathapuram constituency to prove his strength but failed to win.

Quoting a popular song from MGR’s film that goes “Tomorrow is ours,” he said the message in the song was a remedy.

“We will see 1.5 crore cadres unite to make our victory historic tomorrow. We should be ready to make sacrifices to retrieve the party that reached the top under late Jayalalithaa’s leadership and the government she handed over through unity,” Panneerselvam, who had launched the AIADMK Workers’ Rights Retrieval Committee, said.

His plea follows a similar appeal by VK Sasikala, whom Panneerselvam along with AIADMK general secretary Edappadi K Palaniswami had expelled from the party.

(Disclaimer: The headline, subheads, and intro of this report along with the photos may have been reworked by South First. The rest of the content is from a syndicated feed, and has been edited for style.)