TN speaker ejects ex-mlas from res­i­dences


CHEN­NAI: Eigh­teen dis­quali­ied mem­bers of the Tamil Nadu state assem­bly have been served no­tices by the state government to va­cate their res­i­dences. The 18, who were orig­i­nally from the rul­ing Anna DMK but had re­volted against Chief Min­is­ter Edap­pady Pal­niswami and stayed with dis­si­dent leader TTV Dhi­nakaran, were dis­quali­ied by the Speaker un­der the anti-de­fec­tion law. The High Court last week up­held the Speaker’s rul­ing.

Speaker P. Dhana­pal has now di­rected them to va­cate the MLAS’ res­i­den­tial quar­ters al­lot­ted to them and asked ofi­cials to lock and seal them.

Assem­bly Sec­re­tary K. Srinivasan wrote to them that since they are dis­quali­ied, they were no longer en­ti­tled to any of the fa­cil­i­ties pro­vided to them, in­clud­ing res­i­den­tial quar­ters.

He also asked the dis­si­dent MLAS to set­tle the pend­ing rental dues im­me­di­ately.

The MLAS haven’t de­cided whether to go on ap­peal to the Supreme Court.

Tamil Nadu’s main par­ties are, how­ever, gear­ing up for by-elec­tions to 20 state assem­bly con­stituen­cies, in­clud­ing two where in­cum­bent MLAS passed away. Tiru­varur and Thiru­parankun­dram by-polls are due fol­low­ing the re­cent death of sit­ting MLAS - DMK chief M. Karunanidhi and AK Bose of the ADMK.

The ADMK is mak­ing a bid to woo back into its fold the ex-mlas who are cer­tain to con­test the by-elec­tions. Be­sides, the ADMK has formed sev­eral com­mit­tees to or­gan­ise cam­paign in th­ese seats as also in two other seats.

Deputy Chief Min­is­ter O. Pan­neer­sel­vam will lead the ADMK drive for the by-elec­tions.

The DMK is hold­ing dis­cus­sions led by party pres­i­dent MK Stalin, who leads the irst ma­jor election bat­tle for the party after the death of pa­tri­arch Karunanidhi.

By-polls have not been an­nounced for any of the seg­ments so far.

The loy­al­ists of AMMK leader TTV Dhi­narakan, which in­clude the 18 MLAS, have ex­pressed conidence that they will re­tain all seats. While the DMK is seen favoured to win most seats, the threat to Palaniswami comes from Dhi­nakaran loy­al­ists also. The by­polls are do-or-die bat­tles for Palaniswami.

Set­ting the trend for his party’s cam­paign, DMK chief Stalin late Mon­day al­leged that Palaniswami was lead­ing a government of “Cor­rup­tion, Com­mis­sion and Col­lec­tion” and was scared of facing the civic polls and assem­bly by-polls.

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