Minister Raju promotes ‘brotherly’ feeling in AIADMK ranks

Chennai (Tamil Nadu) [India] Apr 18 : Rancour, factionalism and ruckus are our, as the All Anna India Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) Minister for Cooperation Sellur K.

Raju on Tuesday confirmed the process of merger between the two factions of the ruling party. "We are are brothers from the same family. A team is formed by us consisting of senior ministers for the process of merger of two factions. Yesterday Panneerselvam had come forward for the merger of two factions and we welcome it. Our wish is to unite and go ahead," Raju said. He further said it is the time for everyone to forget the past and work for the future. "After Jayalalitha's demise, there was some ruckus and factions happened. We are sad on that and even some hate speeches have rolled out. But, it's now time for all to forget the past and work for the future," he said. He added that earlier also the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) tried to separate the AIADMK but that will never happen.

"We will be united. Our priority is to get our two leaves symbol united from the Election Commission (EC)," he said. Raju asserted that the positions and leaderships in the party and government will be decided after the merger only.

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Forest Minister C. Srinivasan said he is happy about the merger. Earlier, the DMK said such unification would not last long as both groups were coming together to retain power in the state.

"The faction may not last because both are power-mongers. If at all they are uniting, even that is also for power," DMK leader TKS Elangovan told ANI. The DMK leader's remarks came after state Finance Minister D. Jayakumar hinted at the possibility of a merger between the two groups. "We discussed about keeping the party united. O. Panneerselvam gave an opinion which we welcome. We discussed about how we can take the party forward in a united way," Jayakumar said. "Having welcomed his opinion, we will further hold discussions and deliberate about the merger," he added.

Jayakumar said all 123 AIADMK lawmakers and party cadres were on the same page and discussed about the possibilities of retaining the 'Two Leaves' symbol, which had been frozen by the Election Commission.

This development came after the Delhi Police booked TTK Dinakaran on charges of bribing the Election Commission officials to claim the 'Two Leaves' symbol.

The Crime Branch recovered approximately Rs. 1.3 crore from alleged middleman Sukesh Chandrashekhar. Dinakaran, who is considered to be a close Sasikala aide, later said that he was ready to legally face any summons from the Delhi Police.

When asked if Sasikala would quit from the party in case the merger took place, Jayakumar said, "We have no information regarding this.".

Source: ANI