The opposition led by DMK on Sunday petitioned Tamil Nadu Governor C Vidyasagar Rao for ordering an immediate floor test in the state Assembly and directing Chief Minister K Palanisami to prove the majority of his government.
The development comes a week after two factions of the AIADMK came together to sideline jailed General Secretary VK Sasikala and her nephew TTV Dinakaran. The third faction headed by Dinakaran, with 19 MLAS, had earlier this week met the Governor and demanded removal of the Chief Minister saying he had lost their faith in him.
DMK Deputy Leader in the Assembly Duraimurugan told reporters after meeting the Governor that he should order a floor test immediately as the Palanisami government has been reduced to a thorough minority after withdrawal of support by the AIADMK rebel grown whose support has now grown to 22.
“We pointed out to the Governor that when O. Panneerselvam withdrew support of his 9 MLAs in February you had immediately ordered a floor test. Now in a House with an effective strength of 233, the opposition to the government has gone up to 120. This includes DMK (89), and its allies Congress (8), and Muslim League (1).
“The present situation calls for an immediate trial of strength in the Assembly under a precedent set by you,” the DMK delegation told the Governor. It also submitted a letter of the Leader of the Opposition M.K. Stalin to the Governor to press its demand.
For a simple majority, the ruling AIADMK needs the support of 117 and Opposition parties says its backing has come down to 113.
The delegation included J Anbazhagan and Kanimozhi (DMK), Vijayadharani (Congress) and Muslim League member KAM Abubacker.
Duraimurugan said the Governor told the delegation that he was aware of the developments in the state and now that the DMK has given the letter, he would take a decision in accordance with law.
Meanwhile, Dinakaran told reporters in Chennai that his group’s efforts were to “protect” the government and not to topple it.
It is a war between sacrifice and betrayal – sacrifice represented by Sasikala and betrayal represented by Palanisami,” he said.