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AIADMK crisis: Attorney General advises Tamil Nadu Governor to hold floor test in Assembly

AIADMK General Secretary VK Sasikala, who is locked in a bitter battle with O Panneerselvam over Tamil Nadu chief minister’s chair, is growing impatient as Governor C Vidyasagar Rao continues to maintain a silence over his decision. However, later today the Attorney General advised the Tamil Nadu Governor to hold a floor test in Assembly.

Sources from the Attorney General office have said that he has asked the governor to call a special assembly session within one week. The general has reportedly asked to pit OPS and Sasikala against each other.

Rohatgi opined that a special Assembly session be convened within a week for a composite floor test to determine who among the two AIADMK leaders – O Panneerselvam and V K Sasikala – enjoys majority.

Two days after Sasikala was elected AIADMK’s state Legislature Party Leader on February 5, paving the way for her to take over as chief minister, Panneerselvam had raised a banner of revolt saying he was forced to resign.

Sources said that the opinion was sought by Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao from the Attorney General who has cited the 1998 Supreme Court judgment in the Jagdambika Pal case in which the apex court had ordered a floor test in the Assembly to determine who among the two claimants — Pal and Kalyan Singh — had majority for chief ministership of Uttar Pradesh.

Meanwhile, the ruling AIADMK has asserted that a majority of its MLAs are behind general secretary Sasikala.

Party spokesperson Vaigai Chelvan said on Monday that acting Chief Minister Panneerselvam had the support of seven MLAs and therefore could not prove his majority in the state Assembly in event of a floor test.

“He says he can prove his majority based on the wrong information given by someone. Majority of the AIADMK MLAs are with Chinnamma (Sasikala) and we are ready to prove our strength (in a floor test),” he said.

Sasikala was the elected legislature party leader of AIADMK and therefore the Governor should invite her to form the government, he added.

“We expect the chances of his inviting (meeting) her today are high,” he said.

…..Meanwhile, SC verdict on Sasikala DA case reserved for Tuesday

The Supreme Court will deliver a verdict in the disproportionate assets case against VK Sasikala at 10:30 am on Tuesday. With the crisis worsening in Tamil Nadu, Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi has advised Governor Vidyasagar Rao to call for a floor test in the Assembly.

A bench of Justices P C Ghose and Amitava Roy is likely to pronounce the judgment at 10.30 AM tomorrow on a batch of appeals, including the one filed by Karnataka government against the High Court verdict acquitting prime accused Jayalalithaa and her close aide and now AIADMK chief Sasikala.

BJP leader Subramanian Swamy, the original complainant in the case had challenged the order acquittal in the apex court.
Way back in 1996, when he was a Janata Party leader, he had filed a case against Jayalalithaa alleging that, during her tenure as Chief Minister from 1991 to 1996, she amassed properties disproportionate to her known sources of income.

The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam government subsequently filed a slew of cases, including the Rs 66.65 crore disproportionate assets case, against Jayalalithaa, which led to her conviction in September last by a special court.

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