Edappadi government to face trust vote today

Suspense over what Congress will do

Updated - December 04, 2021 11:58 pm IST

Published - February 18, 2017 02:17 am IST - CHENNAI

Strong plea: O. Panneerselvam’s supporters urging MLAs to vote as per the people’s wish in Coimbatore.

Strong plea: O. Panneerselvam’s supporters urging MLAs to vote as per the people’s wish in Coimbatore.

With Tamil Nadu Assembly set to take up, after a gap of 29 years, a vote of confidence motion to test the strength of the two-day-old Edappadi K. Palaniswami ministry on Saturday, the principal opposition party DMK has announced that it would oppose the motion. Its ally the Congress, which has eight members, has left everyone in suspense by deferring its decision till 9 a.m. on the D-day.

The lone IUML member has decided to oppose the motion.

Of the AIADMK’s official strength of 134, there are 11 dissidents including former Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam. On Friday, former Chennai Police Commissioner R. Natraj, the AIADMK’s Mylapore constituency MLA, decided to throw in his lot with Mr. Panneerselvam.

Nonetheless, the AIADMK whip S. Rajendiran issued a directive to all party MLAs to attend the Assembly and vote in favour of the motion.

The need for moving a confidence motion arose after a group of MLAs declared support to Mr. Panneerselvam, who now heads the rebel AIADMK.

On Thursday, Governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao, while inviting Mr. Palaniswami to form the government, asked him to prove his majority within 15 days.

In the current Assembly, the DMK has 89 MLAs; Congress eight and the Indian Union Muslim League one. Besides, there is one nominated member of the Anglo Indian community — Nancy Ann Cynthia Francis — who has no right to vote on such a motion. The present strength of the House is 233 following the demise of former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa. DMK president and Tiruvarur MLA M. Karunanidhi is not likely to attend in view of his health.

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