It comes in the form of the young challenger to the legacy of MGR-Jaya, TTV Dhinakaran who has tasted blood in RK Nagar. Soon after her death her long-time companion Sasikala had taken control of the party as its chief, but the AIADMK split after she attempted to become chief minister too, forcing O Panneerselvam out of the top post. "The present government in Tamil Nadu will not be there within two or three months".
Success for an aggressive DMK is critical as it would lend credence to its campaign line that the people were fed up with the incumbent "horse-trading" regime and wanted to bring it to the seat of power for dispensing good governance. Two leaves symbol was a victory symbol when it was with amma.
Palaniswami, who commands the support of 113 MLAs and nearly all MPs belonging to the party, will find it extremely hard to identify Dhinakaran's "sleeper cells" within his camp.
Since the ruling faction of the AIADMK, led by Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami, on April 17 declared that the Sasikala clan would be kept away from the affairs of the party and government, Dhinakaran built his own faction within the party.
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When someone remarked that an independent candidate is winning in RK Nagar for the first time, Dhinakaran began, "I told you before itself.", but his supporters cut in, shouting that he was the real AIADMK. "The-se MLAs had met TTV after he was released from Tihar jail but did not sail with him when he openly rebelled against EPS-OPS".
What RK Nagar result has shown is that Sasikala, Dinakaran and co. are not as undesirable as EPS-OPS faction tried to portray. "The biggest challenge would be to keep the flock together". Actor Senthil, another supporter of Dhinakaran, said, "After this victory, the leaders of the ruling party should not any more claim that they have the support of 1.5 crore cadre of the party". "The government falling would only lead to imposition of President's rule in the state", Manivannan, Head of the Department of Political Science and Public Administration at the University of Madras, said.
Prof Ramu Manivannan said the camp would now deal with depleting number as well as pressure from the BJP Gover-nment.