After AIADMK coordinator and former Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu, O. Panneerselvam (OPS) was expelled from the party in July by the general council, he and his followers had been trying to install their own office-bearers across the state.
These office-bearers were working parallel to the official AIADMK led by Edappadi K. Palaniswami (EPS).
The late M.G. Ramachandran (MGR), the founder leader of AIADMK and the most popular Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu has always been a source of strength for the party and all the party leaders and cadres have an emotional bond with him.
In Thoothukudi district of Tamil Nadu, the statue of MGR has become a latest point of the clash between the supporters of OPS and EPS. The issue came up after the newly installed leader of the AIADMK at Gibsonpuram in Thoothukudi, P. Thiruchittarambalam allegedly erased the name of the OPS faction leader Edasurai from the pedestal of the MGR statue and instead inscribed his name.
As part of his parallel party functioning, OPS had recently appointed Edasurai as the town district president of his faction and this had led to the confrontation with the EPS group in Thoothukudi.
However, sources in the AIADMK official faction told IANS that the land where the statue of MGR is installed was donated to the party by the forefathers of Thiruchittrambalam. A senior leader of the AIADMK while speaking to IANS said, “MGR is an emotion to us more than a political leader or the founder of the AIADMK. There should not have been a clash in his name and it will not go down well with the people who regard him as the savior of Tamil Nadu by implementing several people-friendly schemes. Even after more than three decades after his passing away, he is remembered across the state as a great visionary and a lover of the downtrodden. “
He added that the OPS faction was unnecessarily creating issues in the name of MGR and added that Thiruhittrambalam is the official office bearer of the party.