Rajya Sabha picks: EPS shows who’s in charge
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Rajya Sabha picks: EPS shows who’s in charge

By TOI calender  08-Jul-2019

Rajya Sabha picks: EPS shows who’s in charge

When the AIADMK on Saturday surprised its own party workers by naming little known faces as its two nominees to the Rajya Sabha, it also sent out a clear message as to who is in control of the party. Chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami is not only calling the shots in the government but also in the party.

By catapulting little known N Chandrasekaran, the party’s Mettur town secretary, and a former minister A Mohammedjan to the Rajya Sabha from the state, EPS has managed to sideline AIADMK coordinator and deputy chief minister O Panneerselvam, when it comes to decision making within the party.

“Chandrasekaran was a known confidante of EPS and is seen with him, whenever the latter visited Salem. Moreover, it was EPS, when he was highways minister in Jayalalithaa’s cabinet in the 2011-16 regime, who pushed Chandrasekaran’s candidature for Mettur assembly segment during 2016 assembly poll and his name too appeared in the AIADMK list,” party insiders said. Following complaints from the local party, however, his name was deleted and replaced with S Semmalai, who eventually won from Mettur. “Now, by choosing Chandrasekaran for Rajya Sabha, EPS has sent out a signal as to who is in control,” they said. “We are given to understand that there were 20-25 party seniors, who were aspiring for a Rajya Sabha seat. By giving it to two people, the party leadership did not want to antagonize the rest,” a senior AIADMK leader said.

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