Vasan Out of Trust Running Assets, Says TN Cong

Vasan Out of Trust Running Assets, Says TN Cong

Former Union Minister G K Vasan is out of a trust that runs party properties, including State headquarters Satyamurthy Bhavan which was under Tamil Maanila Congress's control during 1996-2002, a senior Congress leader said.

When Vasan's father G K Moopanar founded Tamil Maanila Congress in 1996 after breaking away from Congress, the sprawling Satyamurthy Bhavan premises here was under his outfit's possession till it was merged with Congress in 2002.

Against this background, there was speculation whether history will repeat itself and if the property will go under the possession of Vasan's to-be floated party.

Vasan is one of the four trustees of Tamil Nadu Congress Charitable Trust (TNCCT) that administers party properties Satyamurthy Bhavan, the Congress grounds in Teynampet and Kamarajar Arangam.

Former Union Ministers Jayanthi Natarajan, Sudarsana Natchiappan and former MLA D Yasoda are the other trustees.

"As per trust byelaws, Vasan's role as a trustee got automatically terminated the moment he was expelled by party," senior Congress leader and trustee, TNCCT, D Yasoda told PTI here.

A four time MLA and also a State party working committee member, she said being a party member is a non-negotiable eligibility norm "a sine qua non" for both "appointment and continuation" as a trustee.

"Satyamurthy Bhavan is Congress party's property and let there be no doubt that it will remain so."

She also said that "the CWC decides trustees. The chosen ones are later approved and appointed by party president."

Asked if a new trustee will be appointed in the place of Vasan, she said, "There is no immediate need for it, however, the party will look into it."

Asked for his comment on the issue, Vasan declined to say anything.

In the wake of Vasan breaking away from Congress, rumblings have begun in some parts of the state with regard to party properties. Claims and counter claims are being made to local Congress party offices.

Yesterday, in Cuddalore, Vasan's supporters tried to occupy the District Congress party office "Nehru Bhavan" inaugurated by the late leader Kamaraj in 1970.

The Congress party name board was erased and a bicycle was placed atop the building. Bicycle was the symbol of Tamil Maanila Congress during 1996-2002.

Congress members have opposed the Vasan group's claim to property and district revenue officials have said that the "claims and rival claims were under scrutiny as per established norms."

At a time when Vasan is yet to announce his party's name and a symbol yet to be allocated by the Election Commission, his supporters have put a symbol that was previously held by them in sheer enthusiasm.

On November 3, Vasan had quit Congress, angered by the manner in which the leadership handled affairs of the state unit and ignored the merit of the leaders and announced that he would soon float a new party.

He had said AICC's approach in the state was not satisfactory in achieving its goal of bringing party rule in Tamil Nadu.

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