Chennai: Officials of the Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption (DVAC) today conducted raids at the premises of former AIADMK Ministers C Vijayabaskar and SP Velumani today.
DVAC sources said the raids were held at 26 places linked to Velumani, including his residence, and 13 places linked to Vijayabaskar.
The simultaneous raids, which began in the morning, were continuing at various places including Chennai, Pudukottai and Salem.
The DVAC have registered a criminal case against former Rural Development Minister and current MLA Velumani based on allegations that he had abused his official position in awarding tenders injudiciously to his close associated companies causing about Rs 500 crore loss to the state exchequer in replacing the existing street lights with LED lights in rural areas during the period 2015 to 2018.
DVAC said based on the FIR, searches are being conducted at 26 places, including 10 at Chennai, nine at Coimbatore and seven places, including Tambaram and Avadi in Chennai, Tiruchy and Chengalpattu.
The DVAC also registered a criminal case against former Health Minister Vijayabaskar alleging irregularities in the issuance of
essentiality certificate in 2020 to Vels Medical College and Hospital against the regulations of the National Medical Commission.
In that context, searches are being conducted at 13 places, including five at Chennai, three at Salem and one in Madurai, Theni, Pudukottai, Tiruvallur and Tambaram, it added. Besides, premises of Vels Group Chairman Ishari Ganesh, Dr Krishnaraj Dean of Vels Medical College, Dr Balajinathan, former Dean of Govt Mohan Kumaramangalam Medical College have also come under the DVAC scanner.
A large number of AIADMK cadres have gathered outside the residences of both the former Ministers and shouted slogans
denouncing the ruling DMK for foisting cases and terming it as politically motivated.
Several AIADMK cadres, including sitting MLAs, were detained in front of Velumani’s residence after they indulged in heated arguments with the police opposing the raids.
Meanwhile, cndemning the raids at the premises of two former Ministers, AIADMK interim General Secretary and former Tamil
Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami accused the DMK government of foisting false cases against senior AIADMK
Terming the raids as an act of political vendetta, he said: “We are ready to legally face whatever cases were foisted”. “Instead of proceeding the existing cases against his Ministers, Chief Minister MK Stalin is foisting cases against the Opposition parties.
Senior AIADMK leader and former Minister D.Jayakumar said the DMK government has launched raids to divert the public from the recent steep hike in power tariff and to prevent Opposition parties from talking about it.