AIADMK leadership tussle | Madras High Court rules in favour of Edappadi Palaniswami

Division Bench says there was no illegality in the convening of July 11 general council meet

September 02, 2022 11:09 am | Updated 11:09 pm IST - CHENNAI

Edappadi K. Palaniswam O. Panneerselvam  during a rally. File photo

Edappadi K. Palaniswam O. Panneerselvam during a rally. File photo

A Division Bench of the Madras High Court on Friday, September 2, 2022 set aside an order passed by a single judge on August 17 in favour of O. Panneerselvam in the tussle between him and Edappadi K. Palaniswami over the leadership of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK).

Justices M. Duraiswamy and Sunder Mohan allowed appeals challenging the verdict of Justice G. Jayachandran who had nullified the July 11 general council meet when Mr. Palaniswami was elected interim general secretary and Mr. Panneerselvam was expelled from the party.

Since the single judge had ordered status quo ante as on June 23, the day when the posts of Coordinator and Joint Cordinator of the party had lapsed, according to Mr. Palaniswami, the latter had rushed to the Bench claiming that it would be impossible for them to function together.

Dispute over party posts

While it had been the consistent stand of Mr. Panneerselvam that he continues to be the Coordinator of the party and that his five-year tenure would come to an end only in December 2026, Mr. Palaniswami had contended otherwise and argued that both their posts lapsed on June 23.

The basis for such contention was that election to the posts of Coordinator and Joint Cordinator was held in December 2021 on the basis of amendment made to the bylaws through an executive council decision though such body had no power to amend the party bylaws.

Asserting that only the general council was empowered to make amendments, Mr. Palaniswami said, the executive council decision ought to have been ratified by the general council on June 23. Since no such ratification was carried out on that day, the two posts had got lapsed, he argued.

However, the single judge refused to buy such argument by stating that the draft resolutions for the June 23 meet did not contain any resolution which required ratification. He also held that any general council meet in the future should be convened jointly by both their leaders.

Aggrieved against such an order, Mr. Palaniswami had appealed before the Division Bench.

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