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Election Commission says rules flouted for Sasikala in AIADMK

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Asserting that she does not owe an explanation to anybody, Sasikala said, "Amma Jayalalithaa knows who am I. So I don't need to answer anyone else". The Commission has also sought all details about this move of the party alongwith a copy of the resolution.

Flaunting a victory sign, Sasikala, whose sudden rise to the top of the party is being opposed by some AIADMK leaders, was virulent in her attack against Paneerselvam, saying betrayal will not be tolerated.

The party's working president MK Stalin has argued that foisting Sasikala as the chief minister on an unwilling people would be undemocratic, so he will back Panneerselvam. Reacting to the reference made by Paul Pandian on Tuesday that there was suspicion in the minds of people about the death of Jayalalithaa, the caretaker Chief Minister said a retired High Court judge would probe the whole issue.

Meanwhile, party cadres feel Panneerselvam has fallen in DMK's trap.

If all these reports are true, Tamil Nadu Politics can be termed as Very Murky. However soon after, other channels including CNN-news18 cited sources from Raj Bhavan claiming that no such report has been sent to the home ministry yet. As far as public opinion was concerned, she was probably thinking she still had time. Even in Tamil Nadu a month after sitting chief minister MG Ramachandran died in December 1987, the war of succession between Jayalalithaa and Janaki Ramachandran, his wife, saw legislators of two factions holed up in resorts.

Immediately after Panneerselvam's revelation, the AIADMK legislators met under the leadership of Sasikala at the Poes Garden Residence and, around 1am on Wednesday, she came out and told the media that Opposition Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) is behind Panneerselvam's revolt.

Former Union Minister E Ponnusamy on Friday also chose to side with Panneerselvam, thus adding strength to the beleaguered acting Chief Minister's camp.

Sasikala stakes claim to form the government, while Panneerselvam says "dharma" will triumph. In such an eventuality, the tide will surely turn in Panneerselvam's favour. "He has the support of the masses because he is so approachable and down to earth. Who would have thought of that?" says a senior journalist.

"AIADMK has every right to elect its leader". "We are not like birds in a cage", said another legislator.

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