While Ramalingam reportedly termed party action “autocratic,” Palanimanickkam is biding his time

A day after the DMK suspended 33 of its senior functionaries to haul them up for the party’s drubbing in the Lok Sabha elections, several of them are fuming, but quietly as yet.

In Thanjavur, the veteran district secretary and former Union Minister of State for Finance, S.S. Palanimanickkam, who has been a pillar of strength for decades, was on Sunday in no mood for any knee-jerk reaction to the action taken against him for allegedly not ensuring the victory of another DMK senior and former Union Minister T.R. Baalu.

Bidding his time

Mr. Palanimanickkam declined comment when The Hindu reached him in the evening, but he is learnt to be biding his time, to see the contents of the notice that is being sent by the DMK headquarters. .

While another former Minister and dynamic grassroots leader in Dharmapuri district, Mullaivendan, termed the action “selective,” more forthcoming was Rajya Sabha member K.P. Ramalingam, who has also been heading the party’s agriculture wing. A known supporter of the expelled leader, M.K. Alagiri, Dr. Ramalingam was quoted as having told a local TV channel that the decision was “autocratic.” Dr. Ramalingam could not be reached for confirmation.

Violence

Earlier in the day, violence surfaced in Salem. A couple of State transport corporation buses were damaged as supporters of the Panamarathupatty Union secretary, K. Suresh Kumar, who was among those suspended, indulged in stone-throwing. The suspended member was a protégée of the late party veteran, Veerapandi S. Arumugam.

A few loyalists of Mr. Suresh thronged the party’s district office in Salem and demanded that the leadership revoke the action.

The Salem Rural Police have arrested five DMK workers for stone-throwing.

(With inputs from S. Ganesan in Tiruchi and M.K. Ananth in Salem)