Tamil Nadu

Madras High Court to hear on Monday plea to stall AIADMK’s July 11 general council meet

Edappadi K. Palaniswami  greeting Tamil Magan Hussain, who was elected as presidium chairman at the AIADMK general council meeting in Vanagaram, near Chennai recently on Thursday. The court will take a call on staying the appointment of Mr. Hussain tomorrow.

Edappadi K. Palaniswami greeting Tamil Magan Hussain, who was elected as presidium chairman at the AIADMK general council meeting in Vanagaram, near Chennai recently on Thursday. The court will take a call on staying the appointment of Mr. Hussain tomorrow. | Photo Credit: M. VEDHAN

The Madras High Court is slated to hear on Monday a plea to restrain All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) from convening its general council meeting on July 11. The court will also take a call on staying the appointment of A. Tamil Magan Hussain as the presidium chairman of the party.

Justices M. Duraiswamy and Sunder Mohan would also take up for hearing an application filed by general council member M. Shanmugum to punish party leaders Edappadi K. Palaniswami, C.Ve. Shanmugam, K.P. Munusamy, Mr. Hussain, D. Jayakumar and Dindigul C. Sreenivasan for alleged contempt of court.

Filing a series of sub applications in a pending original side appeal, the litigant told the court the party’s founder M.G. Ramachandran had intended that its supremo should always get elected by the primary members and therefore the bylaws of the party were also drafted to reflect his intention.

Accordingly, former Chief Ministers O. Panneerselvam and Mr. Palaniswami were jointly elected as coordinator and joint coordinator respectively of the party by way of a single vote process in December 2021. Such election process had to be ratified by the party’s general council that met on June 23 this year.

However, when news leaked in the media that there was a plan to pass a resolution in favour of unitary leadership during the June 23 meet, the litigant filed a civil suit in the High Court on June 22 and sought an interim order restraining the party from passing any such resolution in the general council.

A single judge of the High Court refused to pass any such interim order. However, on appeal, the Division Bench led by Justice Duraiswamy restrained the general council from taking a decision on any new resolution but for 23 draft resolutions that had been approved by the party coordinator Mr. Panneerselvam.

The order was passed at 4:40 a.m. on June 23 after a special hearing held at the judge’s residence and it was communicated to the counsel representing the party and its leaders. Yet, in defiance of the court order, Mr. Palaniswami moved a resolution to appoint Mr. Hussain as presidium chairman and it was seconded by Mr. Jayakumar and Mr. Sreenivasan, the litigant claimed.

Those who seconded the resolution also claimed it was unanimously accepted by the general council. Stating that the appointment of Mr. Hussain was not part of the 23 draft resolutions, which the court had permitted the general council to discuss, the litigant claimed Mr. Palaniswami, Mr. Jayakumar and Mr. Sreenivasan had therefore wilfully disobeyed court orders.

He contended Mr. Hussain was also guilty of contempt since the latter, after being appointed as presidium chairman, announced that the next general council meet would be held on July 11. The very appointment of Mr. Hussain was “contemptuous” and his further action reveals “unpardonable audacity and nefarious plot” for circumventing court orders, the litigant said.

The litigant sought to punish Mr. Munusamy for announcing that all 23 draft resolutions had been rejected by the general council, without even issuing a copy of those resolutions to all members, besides stating that the party wanted unitary leadership and that a resolution to that effect would be passed in the next general council meet.

He accused former Law Minister C.Ve. Mr. Shanmugam of having announced that both Mr. Panneerselvam and Mr. Palaniswami had ceased to be the coordinator and joint coordinator of the party since their election in December 2021 had not been approved by the general council.

The litigant also accused Mr. Shanmugam of saying the newly appointed presidium chairman was fully competent to convene the next general council meet and that further decisions would be taken in that meet.

“The respondents cannot be permitted to pursue any action that is based on disobedience of the order of this honourable court,” the litigant said and sought to restrain the conduct of the next general council meet on July 11 besides punishing the leaders for contempt and staying the appointment of Mr. Hussain as presidium chairman.


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Printable version | Aug 9, 2022 8:58:16 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/madras-high-court-to-hear-on-monday-plea-to-stall-aiadmks-july-11-general-council-meet/article65594921.ece