Drop Senthilbalaji from the Cabinet, Palaniswami tells Stalin

He says the Chief Minister’s move sets a bad example, and added that when M. Karunanidhi held the post, he removed Aladi Aruna and N.K.K.P. Raja when charges were made against them

Published - June 19, 2023 12:07 am IST - SALEM

AIADMK general secretary Edappadi K. Palaniswami greeting the functionaries of other parties who joined the AIADMK at Attur in Salem district on Sunday. 

AIADMK general secretary Edappadi K. Palaniswami greeting the functionaries of other parties who joined the AIADMK at Attur in Salem district on Sunday.  | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Chief Minister M.K. Stalin should drop V. Senthilbalaji from the Cabinet, AIADMK general secretary Edappadi K. Palaniswami said on Sunday.

Keeping a person, arrested on corruption charges, in the Cabinet is not correct. When M. Karunanidhi was the Chief Minister, he dropped Aladi Aruna and N.K.K.P. Raja from the Cabinet when charges were made against them. Likewise, when Jayalalithaa was the Chief Minister, she dropped S.S. Krishnamoorthy from the Cabinet after a complaint came up against him. Mr. Senthilbalaji was in the custody of the Enforcement Directorate (ED). The AIADMK saw this as setting a bad example, he told reporters here.

Asked about Mr. Stalin’s allegations that the AIADMK was a slave of the BJP, Mr. Palaniswami, who took part at a function at Attur in which workers of other parties joined the AIADMK, said the AIADMK ruled the State for 31 years. In the 2021 Assembly election, the party-led alliance won 75 seats. “We are bringing the problems of people to the government’s attention. We are not the slaves of anyone. In 1999, the DMK entered into an alliance with the BJP and was part of the BJP-led government at the Centre. An alliance is an agreement for an election. Every party has its own principles, and we [the AIADMK] have our own,” he said.

Responding to Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s remarks that the BJP should win 25 seats in Tamil Nadu, Mr. Palaniswami said it was the view of the BJP. The AIADMK was working to win all 40 Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.

As for actor Vijay’s possible entry into politics, the Leader of the Opposition said everyone had the right to express his or her views.

He said the AIADMK was against NEET and fought against it and went to court.

“Considering the welfare of government school students, the AIADMK government created a 7.5% internal quota for them in the admission to medical courses,” Mr. Palaniswami said.

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