Sidelined AIADMK (Amma) deputy chief TTV Dinakaran on Thursday said he has sought the removal of chief minister K Palaniswami and his deputy O Panneerselvam during his meeting with Tamil Nadu governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao even as he asserted that he didn’t want the state government to fall.
At his first meeting with the governor after 19 MLAs loyal to him expressed lack of confidence in the chief minister last month, he accused the government of exerting pressure on his camp to woo the MLAs back to their fold.
“It is evident he (Palaniswami) has no majority. Therefore, he should be asked (by the governor) to prove majority,” Dhinakaran told reporters outside his residence after the meeting at the Raj Bhavan.
He said he had sought “action” on the August 22 demand of his camp MLAs, who had earlier told the governor that they had lost confidence in the chief minister and that he should be removed.
“Our intention is to change the chief minister and (Deputy CM) O Panneerselvam,” he said.
The governor told the delegation “he is watching everything. He said he will soon take a good decision and do his duty”, Dinakaran said.
Asked about MLA SDK Jakkaiyan reportedly switching over to the Palaniswami camp, Dinakaran merely said he had spoken to him this morning and that it was natural for people to get jittery when pressurised.
On August 22, 19 pro-Dinakaran MLAs had met Rao and told him they had lost confidence in Palaniswami and wanted him to be removed as chief minister.
The number of dissident MLAs has since grown to 21.
The Dinakaran camp MLAs had met Rao a day after the formal merger of the two factions of ruling AIADMK led by Palaniswami and then rebel leader and present deputy chief minister O Panneerselvam on August 21.
The revolt in the ruling party had sparked demands for the governor to order the government to face a floor test in the assembly.
In the 234-member house, the AIADMK has a strength of 135, including the Speaker.
The opposition has a total strength of 98, including 89 of the DMK, eight of the Congress and an IUML member.