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Tamil Nadu Assembly Speaker P Dhanapal today issued notices to AIADMK MLAs belonging to the sidelined TTV Dhinakaran camp, who had expressed lack of confidence in Chief Minister K Palaniswami.
The notices, issued for the third time, directs the 19 dissident legislators to personally appear before Dhanapal on September 14, sources said.
The MLAs have been asked to explain why action should not be taken against them on a plea for their disqualification by Government Chief Whip, S Rajendran.
"They will respond to it," Dhinakaran merely said when reporters sought his response to the notice at Tirunelveli.
The development comes on a day when speculation was rife about the whereabouts of Dhinakaran loyalist MLAs with some reports saying they could be at Coorg in Karnataka moving away from Puducherry yesterday.
Dhinakaran has a total of 21 MLAs supporting him.
His 19 loyalist MLAs gave a representation to Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao on August 22 seeking Palaniswami's ouster.
Yesterday, one of the 19 MLAs, S T K Jakkaiyan switched loyalty to Palaniswami camp, even as three more MLAs pledged their support to Dhinakaran.
Reportedly, Jakkaiyan has also been sent notice asking him to furnish his reply.
Raj Bhavan has not officially released any statement on whether these three MLAs, E A Rathina Sabapathy, V T Kalaiselvan and S Karunas (an ally of AIADMK who won on ruling party's two leaves symbol) had given indiviudal letters expressing lack of confidence in Palaniswami.
On August 24, Rajendran had said that the 19 Dhinakaran camp legislators had indulged in anti-party activity implying "voluntary relinquishing" of their respective membership.
Such MLAs were also liable to be disqualified under Tenth Schedule of the Constitution, he had said.
Pointing this as well as a relevant rule, he had said that he had submitted a memorandum to Dhanapal seeking their disqualification.