Eight MLAs from DMDK, 1 from PMK and 1 from Puthiya Tamizhagam have submitted their resignations to the Tamil Nadu Assembly speaker. All the MLAs have resigned from their respective parties to join the AIADMK. The speaker of the Tamil Nadu assembly has accepted the resignations and announced that DMDK leader Vijayakanth will no longer be the Leader of Opposition in the assembly as the party's numbers have dwindled.
The speaker however says that no party has been qualified for leader of opposition status in the assembly. One of the MLAs who has quit the DMDK told The News Minute, "The assembly session is ending and we need not now continue with DMDK. We will join the AIADMK officially soon and this resignation is a prelude to that."
Another MLA said that the resignations would not come as a surprise to Vijayakanth as they had been operating as a 'separate block anyway'. The signs of dissidence in DMDK started more than three years ago. In 2013 itself, almost seven MLAs from the party had met CM J Jayalalithaa, distancing themselves from the party.
With the resignations, the DMDK is reduced to a party with just 20 MLAs. The DMK meanwhile has 23 MLAs. Though these rebel MLAs had distanced themselves from their respective parties from 2013 itself, but were waiting for the assembly session to get over to submit their resignations, lest anti-defection laws would be applicable to them.