The battle for the AIADMK’s “two leaves symbol” is in the home stretch. The Election Commission of India is likely to decide today which of the two camps that lay claim to J Jayalalithaa’s political legacy – the one led by led O Panneerselvam or the other presided over by VK Sasikala serving time in a Bengaluru jail – should get the election symbol.
O Panneerselvam, or OPS, the trusted lieutenant of the former chief minister had taken charge but was, according to him, forced to quit by VK Sasikala, who was later convicted by the Supreme Court to four years in jail in a two-decade old disproportionate assets case where Jayalalithaa was also an accused.
Before she went to a Bengaluru jail, Sasikala, however, appointed nephew TTV Dinakaran as the party’s deputy chief and her proxy, E Palaniswamy, as chief minister.
The Election Commission of India has frozen the two leaves symbol and both the camps (Sasikala & OPS) need to choose new symbols to fight the R K NAGAR by poll election.
இரட்டை இலை சின்னத்தை முடக்கி தேர்தல் ஆணையம் உத்தரவு.
— O Panneerselvam (@OfficeOfOPS) March 22, 2017
Translation: Two Leave Symbol frozen by Election Commission of India
Neither of the two groups shall be permitted to use the symbol ‘Two Leaves’ of AIADMK: Election Commission pic.twitter.com/7jHdcztbP1
— ANI (@ANI) March 22, 2017
In 1989, the AIADMK party was divided as two factions- one led by Late MGR’s wife Janaki and the other led by Jayalalithaa, the political protege of MGR. EC in 1989 temporarily froze the two-leaves symbol and Jayalalithaa led faction got the two-leaves symbol and Janaki led faction got the two-doves symbol.
DMK won the elections and Jayalalithaa became the Leader of Opposition. After the defeat, the two factions merged and the EC later restored the two-leaves symbol to AIADMK led by Jayalalithaa.