This Article is From Feb 19, 2017

E Palaniswami Wins Tamil Nadu Floor Test After 5 Hours Of Drama: 10 Facts

E Palaniswami, who was sworn in on Thursday as Chief Minister, won with 122 votes in his favour.


  • E Palaniswamy won trust vote with 122 AIADMK legislators backing him
  • Legislators broke chairs, yanked microphones over demand of secret voting
  • Speaker alleged he was "tortured" by opposition legislators in assembly
Chennai: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E Palaniswami won a test of strength on Saturday in an assembly where close to 100 opposition lawmakers were missing after violence and chaos over a demand for secret voting. But the trust vote may only be the first of many battles that the 63-year-old Chief Minister will have to fight. Former chief minister O Panneerselvam has promised that he had lost the battle, not the war, and said he would go back to the people. DMK chief MK Stalin first complained to the Governor about the way the vote was conducted, and then, sat on a hunger strike under the gaze of Mahatma Gandhi's statute at the city's Marina Beach before he was detained by the police and whisked away.

Here are the latest developments in this big story.

  1. Mr Palaniswami, who was sworn in on Thursday as Chief Minister, won with 122 votes in his favour. 11 votes against him came from the rival O Panneerselvam camp that calls itself the real AIADMK. The DMK's 88 members were evicted and the Congress' eight walked out in protest.

  2. The trust vote, scheduled for 11 am, was held at 3.15 pm on Saturday after multiple adjournments of the state assembly amid chaos as DMK legislators broke chairs and a table, yanked out mics and surrounded and heckled the Speaker, P Dhanapal, who eventually ordered their eviction.

  3. The opposition MLAs were protesting against the speaker not allowing secret voting in the trust vote. Mr Panneerselvam too had demanded secret voting.

  4. Speaker P Dhanapal alleged he was "tortured" by opposition legislators, who tore his shirt. When marshals tried to escort Mr Dhanapal out, DMK members pulled him back to his chair. One DMK MLA sat on the Speaker's chair in protest.

  5. Mr Stalin emerged from the assembly with his shirt torn and said marshals had caused injuries while evicting him. He also alleged that his party's legislators were assaulted by the marshals. He later protested along with hundreds of DMK workers at the Marina Beach.

  6. News agencies reported street protests in several parts of the state and over 300 persons, including former union minister TR Balu, were arrested. Angry comments on social media including from prominent actors Kamal Haasan and Arvind Swami slammed the vote.

  7. Mr Panneerselvam said that the floor test was conducted after the eviction of Opposition members and so was anti-democracy. "Dharma has been momentarily eclipsed but it shall win finally," he said.

  8. E Palaniswami, who became Chief Minister because Ms Sasikala couldn't after being convicted for corruption, said with his government winning the confidence vote in the Assembly, a vow taken the party chief had been fulfilled. He visited the memorials of party founder M G Ramachandran and former Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, where party workers shouted slogans of "Chinnama Vaazhga," hailing Sasikala.

  9. Mr Palaniswami accused Mr Panneerselvam of trying to unseat his government by joining hands with the opposition DMK. "Their true face has been exposed by today's result," he had said.

  10. Mr Panneerselvam resigned last week to facilitate a takeover of the top post by Ms Sasikala, Ms Jayalalithaa's closest companion for decades. He later rebelled and said he should continue in the top post. When Ms Sasikala was convicted, she pushed her loyalist Mr Palaniswami for chief minister and he took oath on Thursday along with a 30-member cabinet.