Party will chart a separate course to realising MGR and Jayalalithaa’s dreams: Edappadi K. Palaniswami

Edappadi K. Palaniswami was speaking to cadres on Monday in Theni district, the home district of the party’s deposed leader, O. Panneerselvam; this comes in the backdrop of both Mr. Palniswami and Mr. Panneerselvam announcing the fielding of candidates for the upcoming Erode (East) bypoll

Updated - January 26, 2023 10:20 am IST

Published - January 23, 2023 03:50 pm IST - THENI

AIADMK functionaries giving a rousing welcome to former Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami in Theni on January 23, 2023

AIADMK functionaries giving a rousing welcome to former Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami in Theni on January 23, 2023 | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

AIADMK’s interim general secretary, Edappadi K. Palaniswami, on Monday said the party would chart a separate path in realising the dreams of party founder, M.G. Ramachandran and former leader, Jayalalithaa.

In a veiled attack on his rival leader, O. Pannerselvam, who is leading a small faction of the party, Mr. Palaniswami said the cadres need not bother about “how others are”.

“Realising the dreams of our leaders is our way of expressing gratitude to them (the leaders). We need not bother about how others are; our path should be a separate path, an honest way, to realise the dreams of our leaders of benefiting the common man, development of Tamil Nadu and making the State free of poverty,” he said amidst loud cheers from hundreds of cadres who gave him a grand reception in Cumbum.

The AIADMK leaders in southern districts, including the party’s treasurer, Dindigul C. Srinivasan, organised a huge road show for Mr. Palaniwami in the home district of Mr. Pannerselvam, a move that assumes significance against the backdrop of the upcoming by-election to the Erode (East) Assembly constituency.

Mr. Palaniswami, who had come to the district to attend wedding functions of his party cadres, also made a pointed remark: “Theni district has been shaken,” while thanking the cadres for turning up in large numbers in the early hours to greet him.

A senior party leader, present at the road show, said too much importance should not be given to the former Chief Minister’s remarks of a “separate path”. “It was only a comment made to enthuse the cadres. Anyway, things will become clearer in a couple of days,” he said without further commenting on the issue.

The Palaniswami faction of the AIADMK is planning to contest the by-election to the Erode (East) Assembly constituency, even though the seat had been given to its alliance partner, the Tamil Maanila Congress, during the 2021 general election.

Meanwhile, the rival camp, led by Mr. Panneerselvam, has also said it will field its candidate for the by-poll and extend its support to the BJP if needed.

A by-election to the constituency was necessiated following the death of the Congress MLA, E. Thirumahan Everaa.

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