BIG DAY for TN.. Governor will reach Chennai on Thursday

Mumbai: Maharashtra Governor C.V. Rao, who holds additional charge of Tamil Nadu, will travel to Chennai on Thursday afternoon as the South Indian state was gripped by a major political crisis, official sources said here on Wednesday.

"The Governor will be reaching Chennai by tomorrow afternoon. Further details of his programme are not available," an official source said here.

The sudden leadership tug-of-war within the ruling AIADMK erupted last Sunday with the abrupt resignation of Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam, who later alleged he was "forced" to quit.

A section of AIADMK legislators are now rooting for V.K. Sasikala, a close aide of the late party supremo and Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa, who died on December 5 last year.

The sources said the Governor is keeping close tabs on the unravelling political situation in Tamil Nadu since the past four days and is fully abreast of the developments there.

The sources dubbed as "sheer speculation" reports claiming that the Governor was planning to call both the warring factions in Tamil Nadu - led by incumbent Chief Minister Panneerselvam and the claimant to the post, Sasikala - to prove their majority among the ruling AIADMK legislators.

"The Governor is monitoring the situation minutely, and when his plans are finalized, it will be announced accordingly," the sources added.