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OPS faction candidate files nomination from RK Nagar

Election Commission freezes AIADMK party symbol for RK Nagar bypoll

The Panneerselvam camp has "removed" AIADMK General Secretary VK Sasikala from the party.

"It will be interesting to see if OPS' popularity translates into votes for his faction's candidate, Madhusoodhanan (ex-ADMK presidium chairman), who has been out of active politics for many years". Sasikala, a long-time companion of the former CM, was named as her successor by the party but days before her anointment, Panneerselvam revolted against her. The Sasikala faction also wanted the hat symbol and was unhappy when auto rikshaw symbol was given to them by EC.

On Wednesday, the EC had ordered to freeze the "two leaves" election symbol of the party ahead of the by-poll in RK Nagar Assembly, a constituency represented by J Jayalalithaa before her death.

"Our first choice was "electric pole" as it looks a bit like "two leaves", and we got it", said P H Manoj Pandian, a former AIADMK legal secretary.

The two factions have, not surprisingly, chosen to appropriate the name "Amma" in their party.

The poll panel yesterday chose to freeze the AIADMK election symbol of "two leaves", after representatives of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam and Sasikala factions made their claims for it.

E Palaniswamy's faction was allotted a hat as its symbol while O Panneerselvam acquired an electric pole.

He said his faction will formally file a petition with the Election Commission of India on Friday. RK Nagar is the constituency from where former Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalithaa contested the elections.

The OPS faction said Dinakaran's conviction in a Foreign Exchange Regulation Act case has also been brought to the notice of the ECI.

The other parties in the fray are the DMK, DMDK and the CPM. Thambidurai said there is no split in the party.

Dinakaran did not hide his disappointment when he said he did not expect the official AIADMK symbol would be frozen.

Dinakaran will be contesting in RK Nagar on behalf of the ruling party.