Numbers in his favour, Palaniswami confident of winning confidence

Chennai, Feb 16 (IANS) Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami said he would prove his majority in the assembly on Saturday as asked by Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao.

The assembly is being convened on February 18 and Palaniswami has to prove his majority on that day.

Soon after taking oath on Thursday, Palaniswami went to Marina beach to pay homage at the memorial of late Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa.

Palaniswami was accompanied by AIADMK’s Deputy General Secretary T.T.V. Dinakaran and other ministers.

A large number of AIADMK members were at the memorial at Marina beach and shouted slogans of “Chinamma Vazgha” (Long Live Chinamma), referring to AIADMK General Secretary V.K. Sasikala.

Sasikala is in jail in Bengaluru convicted in a corruption case.

Speaking to reporters, Palaniswami said he would prove his majority in the assembly as asked by the Governor.

V.N. Virugai Ravi, a legislator supporting Palaniswami, told IANS: “We have the support of 125 legislators and we will prove our majority.”

Echoing him on the numbers, V. Alexander, another lawmaker in Palaniswami camp, told IANS: “Now Amma’s (Jayalalithaa) government will continue in the state.”

“With T.T.V. Dinakaran appointed as the Deputy General Secretary, the party is set to grow further. He is a nice person and moves well with all party men,” Alexander added.

As of now the numbers are heavily in favour of Palaniswami with 125 legislators -including the Speaker – in his favour.

On the other hand, rival O. Panneerselvam’s camp has the support of 10 lawmakers.

The opposition DMK has 89 members, Congress 8, Indian Union Muslim League-1 and one seat is vacant.

In another development, the AIADMK legislators supporting Palaniswami started going back to the beach resort where they have been staying since last week.

They were brought from the resort to attend the swearing in ceremony at Raj Bhavan.

Alexander said they are waiting for instructions from party senior leaders.

He said the assembly is being convened on Saturday and the floor test is expected to happen on that day.

“Rivals have been saying that we are being held in captivity at the resort which is not the case,” he added.