Election Commission on Friday issued a notice to jailed AIADMK leader VK Sasikal based on a petition challenging her nomination as the party general secretary, even as the rival O Panneerselvam camp has intensified its demand for a secret ballot during the trust vote in the Assembly.
Representing the Panneerselvam camp, Rajya Sabha MP V Maitreyan reportedly petitioned the Commission on the legality of Sasikala’s elevation.
If Sasikala is removed from the post, her decision to expel former chief minister Panneerselvam from the party will stand null and void.
Governor C Vidyasagar Rao had given Chief Minister and Sasikala loyalist Edapaddi Palaniswamy 15 days time to prove his majority in the 234-member Tamil Nadu Assembly.
Palaniswamy’s supporters claimed that he had the backing of 124 of the 135 party legislators.
On Friday, the Panneerselvam faction met Speaker P Dhanapal to demand a secret ballot when the motion of confidence is moved in the Assembly.
The trust vote is scheduled on Saturday.
After holding hectic discussions at Panneerselvam’s residence, a small group of AIADMK leaders reportedly met the Speaker in the Secretariat.
S Semmalai, a Panneerselvam loyalist, said they have urged the Speaker for a secret ballot to decide on the motion of confidence.
However, a former MP of AIADMK is of the view that the legislators supporting Panneerselvam should vote against the confidence motion as a logical progression in their revolt.
“Panneerselvam and the legislators supporting him should openly vote against the motion of confidence and to build the credibility in the people`s mind space,” KC Palaniswamy told IANS on Friday.
On Thursday, Edappadi K Palaniswami, of the Sasikala camp, was sworn-in as Chief Minister along with 30 ministers.
The Assembly will be convened on Saturday where Palaniswami with 125 legislators in his camp will seek the confidence of the house for his government.