The Madras High Court, on Monday, 4 July, refused to interfere with the call made by the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) to conduct a general council meeting on 11 July, which is expected to further distance O Panneerselvam (OPS) from the power centre at the party. The case has been adjourned to Thursday.
The bench comprising Justices M Duraiswamy and Sunder Mohan also heard the petition filed by general council member M Shanmugum accusing Joint Coordinator Edappadi K Palaniswami (EPS) and other leaders CV Shanmugam, KP Munusamy, Tamil Magan Hussain, D Jayakumar and Dindigul C Sreenivasan of alleged contempt of court.
The plea also demanded a stay on the appointment of A Tamil Magan Hussain as the presidium chairman of the party. The respondents have been asked to file counters by Thursday.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court on Monday agreed to list the plea moved by EPS challenging the Madras High Court division bench's order staying passing of resolutions in AIADMK General Council, on Wednesday, subject to the approval of Chief Justice of India.
Senior Advocate CS Vaidyanathan had cited the hearing before the Madras High Court to the bench led by Justice Indira Banerjee.
OPS faction has already appealed to the Election Commission (EC) stating the proposed meeting cannot be valid as he, the coordinator of the party, did not sanction permission.
EPS' camp also approached the Supreme Court on Tuesday seeking to stay an order by the Madras High Court, which favoured OPS.
In an emergency midnight hearing on 23 June, a division bench of the Madras High Court restrained the AIADMK general council from amending the party by-laws during its meeting which would have elevated EPS as the single leader of the party.
Yet, in defiance of the court order, Palaniswami moved a resolution to appoint Hussain as presidium chairman, OPS has claimed.
‘99% of AIADMK Office-Bearers Favour EPS'
Meanwhile, several senior AIADMK leaders have come out in support of EPS. Senior AIADMK leader and former minister Natham R Viswanathan on Sunday said he was confident EPS would be made general secretary of the party. He, along with senior party functionaries such as P Thangamani, SP Velumani, and Sellur K Raju were inspecting the arrangements for the 11 July meeting at Vanagaram in Chennai.
"Barring a few, all 23 resolutions rejected at the June 23 GC meeting would be adopted on 11 July," he said, adding that 99 percent of AIADMK office-bearers favour EPS.
He also refuted OPS' allegations and stated the resolutions were adopted as per the party's by-laws.
Last week, senior leaders from the EPS faction of AIADMK, including SP Velumani, P Thangamani, and CV Shanmugham, met with OPS to convince him to accept the idea of single leadership for the party; but the latter reportedly struck it down.
It is to be noted that OPS and EPS were jointly elected as coordinator and joint coordinator respectively of the party by way of a single vote process in December 2021.
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