Tamil Nadu speaker disqualifies 18 rebel AIADMK MLAs

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Chennai: 18 MLAs backing TTV Dhinakaran were disqualified with effect from Monday, September 18, 2017 under 1986 Tamil Nadu Assembly Members party defection law.
Tamil Nadu Assembly Speaker, P. Dhanapal said, “18 dissident AIADMK MLAs loyal to sidelined party Deputy General Secretary TTV Dhinakaran disqualified.”
The Assembly speaker said that the dissident MLAs were disqualified under the Anti-Defection rules of the Tamil Nadu Assembly.
The 18 disqualified MLAs include Thangatamilselvan, R. Murugan, Mariappan Kennedy, K Kathirkamu, C. Jayanthi Padmanabhan, P. Palaniappan, V. Senthil
Balaji, S. Muthiah, P. Vetrivel, N.G. Parthiban, M Kothandapani, T.A. Elumalai, M. Rengasamy, R. Thangadurai, R. Balasubramani, SG Subramanian, R. Sundarraj and K. Uma Maheswari.
The said MLAs, besides another, had on August 22 met the Tamil Nadu Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao and conveyed that they had lost confidence in Palanisamy, who is facing a challenge from Dhinakaran.
One of the dissident MLAs, SKT Jakkaiyan, had later switched camps to support Palanisamy.
These MLAs had since been demanding the removal of the Chief Minister.
The August 22 meeting had come a day after the formal merger of the two factions led by Palanisamy and then rebel leader and now Deputy Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam.
Earlier, Chief Government Whip S Rajendran had urged the Speaker to disqualify the said MLAs for “anti-party activities” following their revolt against the Chief Minister.
Though the Speaker had issued notices to all the dissident MLAs seeking their individual presence, they had, however, not turned up.
A resolution adopted at a meeting chaired by Palanisamy on August 28 had said Dhinakaran was “removed” from the post of Deputy General Secretary.
Opposition parties have since been insisting the Governor direct a floor test for the Palanisamy government for proving its majority in the Assembly.
In the 234-member House, AIADMK has a strength of 134 MLAs.
The RK Nagar seat fell vacant in 2016 following the death of then Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.
Opposition has a strength of 98 including DMK’s 89, Congress 8 and IUML one.
With inputs from PTI.

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