Stung by the RK Nagar bypoll defeat, the ruling AIADMK today cracked the whip against nine party functionaries, sacking four supporters of rebel leader TTV Dhinakaran from their posts and ousting five others from the party.
District unit secretaries P Vetrivel, NG Parthiban, M Rengasamy and Thangatamilselvan, all considered close to Dhinakaran, were being “relieved” from their posts, said chief minister K Palaniswami, who is also AIADMK co-coordinator, and deputy chief minister and party coordinator O Panneerselvam.
Vetrivel is district secretary, Chennai (North), while Parthiban is the secretary of Vellore (East). Rengasamy is the secretary of Thanjavur (North) and Thangatamilselvan of Theni.
The party leaders did not give any reasons for the dismissals.
Five other functionaries were being removed from the party, they said in a joint statement.
Among them were VP Kalairajan and V Muthiah, district secretaries of South Chennai (North) and Tirunelveli Urban, respectively. Va Pugazhenthi, secretary of AIADMK’s Karnataka unit, and spokespersons Nanchil Sampath and C R Saraswathi had also been removed from the party, they said.
Panneerselvam and Palaniswami said the five were being “removed” since they went against the party’s principles and brought “disrepute” to the AIADMK.
“Party workers are requested not to have any truck with them,” they said in the statement.
AIADMK sources had earlier said action was likely against six party functionaries, following the party candidate’s defeat in RK Nagar by Dhinakaran. The top leaders finally acted against nine people.
The action comes a day after Dhinakaran won the RK Nagar bypoll by a thumping margin of 40,707 votes against AIADMK’s E Madhusudhanan.