Rebel AIADMK leader O Panneerselvam and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edapaddi Palaniswami. Photo:

The two factions of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), one led by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and the other by former chief minister O Panneerselvam, finally merged after days of meetings and demands from both sides leading to a big political drama in Tamil Nadu, according to media reports.

Speaking at a joint press conference on Monday afternoon, Palaniswami reportedly said,  “Our hearts and minds should unite and we should give everything to fulfill the dream of MGR. When other parties split, they never reunite, but the AIADMK is not any other political party. We will only become stronger than before. There were people who said the party would implode, but that is only their dream. We’ve spoken, we’ve resolved our differences and we will work to keep up the legacy of MGR and Amma, and for the betterment of Tamil Nadu and the Tamil people.”

O Panneerselvam will be the deputy chief minister and will have the finance portfolio. An 11-member coordination committee will run the party. Panneerselvam said, “The burden in my heart is gone. No one can separate us, we are children of Amma [Jayalalithaa], and we are brothers.”

Reports also said that the AIADMK has decided to remove V K Sasikala from the post of party general secretary.