For AIADMK, two heads may not be bet­ter than one

The Hindu Business Line - - NEWS - TE RAJA SIMHAN

A cru­cial meet­ing of the AIADMK dis­trict sec­re­taries will be held at the party head­quar­ters on Wed­nes­day to take stock of the mas­sive de­feat in the re­cent Lok Sabha elec­tions.

The meet­ing is also likely to discuss whether the party should give up the present dual lead­er­ship and have one leader, as was de­manded by some of the party lead­ers in the last few days.

At present, the power in the party is split be­tween Edap­padi K Palaniswam­i chief min­is­ter, who is Co-co­or­di­na­tor of the AIADMK and O Pa­neer­sel­vam deputy chief min­is­ter, the co­or­di­na­tor and also the party con­venor. How­ever, re­ports say dis­con­tent is brewing be­tween them, and this has hurt the party. Some of the party lead­ers felt that a sin­gle leader should lead both the party and the gov­ern­ment as was done in the past.

Last week, Ra­jan Chel­lappa, AIADMK MLA from Madu­rai and a se­nior party leader, called for a uni­tary lead­er­ship as dual lead­er­ship was not help­ing the party. There should be only one leader who is loved by the peo­ple should lead the party. It can be one of the two lead­ers - ei­ther Palaniswam­i or Pa­neer­sel­vam - or a third per­son.

With a cou­ple of other lead­ers echo­ing a sim­i­lar view, the party is­sued a gag or­der for­bid­ding lead­ers com­ment­ing on the lead­er­ship.

How­ever, in a ma­jor U-turn, Chel­lappa to­day said that cadres and party should stay united un­der the lead­er­ship of the two lead­ers.

Some of the party cadres are stated to be un­happy with Pa­neer­sel­vam try­ing to get a min­is­te­rial berth in the Cen­tre for his son P Raveen­dranath, the lone AIADMK MP win­ning from Theni con­stituency. It is learnt that most of the se­nior lead­ers have moved closer to Palaniswam­i.

Mean­while, se­nior party leader and fish­eries min­is­ter D Jayaku­mar on Tues­day told newsper­sons that the need for a sin­gle lead­er­ship can­not be de­cided by an MLA or an MP but a de­ci­sion should be taken col­lec­tively. Cadres can discuss such is­sues in the gen­eral coun­cil meet­ing, which will be con­vened soon, he said. Mean­while, for­mer AIADMK min­is­ter and Amma Makkal Mun­netra Kazhagam (AMMK) leader T In­bathamizha­n, re­turned to his par­ent party. A num­ber of AMMK func­tionar­ies from var­i­ous dis­tricts also left the AMMK to join the AIADMK.

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