Banners and massive wall posters stating that "Dharma will eventually triumph" could be seen everywhere as a meet was held here today to elect O Panneerselvam as legislature party leader. That the conviction and sentencing of their leader in a graft case has left the party stunned was apparent from the faces of ministers and MLAs who arrived for the meeting. They appeared weary and were unwilling to talk or even utter a single word while the eyes of some were moist.
Scores of women office bearers including Handlooms Minister S Gokula Indira wailed. Chaotic scenes were witnessed and a near stampede situation prevailed in the party headquarters. Party workers jostled to get inside the venue and wanted to know who the "standby" Chief Minister will be till the "resumption of office by party chief Jayalalithaa".
Not just the party headquarters, but the entire Avvai Shanmugam Road where the office was located saw party workers converging for the second day and police had to erect barricades to regulate the crowd. Conches were blown and protest march taken out against DMK president Karunanidhi which was stopped by police.
Some DMDK MLAs who had leaned towards the ruling AIADMK like R Sundarrajan attended the meeting as invitees to express solidarity, party sources said.