Former Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami was trying to capture the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) to protect his personal interests, said R. Vaithilingam, AIADMK MLA and staunch supporter of deposed party leader O. Panneerselvam.
Mr. Vaithilingam met V.K. Sasikala, an aide of former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa against whom Mr. Panneerselvam had rebelled in 2017, on Friday.
He claimed to journalists in Thanjavur that Mr..Panneerselvam was trying to safeguard and strengthen the party by joining hands with those who parted ways earlier, including R.M. Veerappan, Panruti S. Ramachandran, A.C. Shanmugam, Sasikala and AMMK leader T.T.V. Dhinakaran. However, Mr. Palaniswami, in his view, was trying to destroy the party by capturing it in an autocratic manner.
When asked if his meeting with Ms. Sasikala at Ovalkudi near Orathanadu was politically significant, he claimed it was just an unexpected meeting and there was nothing more to it. If at all a meeting with “Chinnamma” (Sasikala) is to be held for political reasons, such meetings would happen with the knowledge of the media, he added.