Vigilance Conducts Searches at Ex-AIADMK Minister’s Premises; Party Slams ‘Political Vendetta’

Vigilance officials on Thursday conducted searches at around 20 locations of AIADMK leader and former Tamil Nadu Transport Minister MR Vijayabhaskar in connection with a disproportionate assets case, with the opposition party claiming it was done due to “political vendetta.” No “valuable items” were recovered during the raids, Vijayabhaskar’s advocate later told reporters. Searches by officials of Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption were held here and at Karur in various locations linked to the former minister, police said without divulging details.

Vijayabhaskar was Transport minister in the previous AIADMK government. His advocate Selvam later said the searches related to the AIADMK leader’s “disproportionate wealth” during the check period 2016-21, when he was Minister, were held based on a complaint.

“We will face the matter in the court. They have not taken anything from his house. He is ready to face this disproportionate wealth (case),” he said. Responding to the searches, AIADMK coordinator O Panneerselvam dubbed the action as “political vendetta.” The ruling DMK could not face its arch-rival politically and therefore was resorting to intimidation, he told reporters.

“Whatever threats, the AIADMK is ready to face. The DMK should stop such anti-democratic action, taken due to political vendetta,” he said. The raids were “condemnable” and “we will get due remedy through court,” the former chief minister added.

Meanwhile, in a joint statement, Panneerselvam and party joint coordinator K Palaniswami alleged that the DMK government, “which came to power on false promises” during the elections, was not focussing on public welfare but on “vindictive action” against the opposition. Many DMK ministers were facing cases and to divert attention from that and due to “political vendetta” such false allegations were being made, they claimed.

AIADMK will not be cowed down by such attempts and Chief Minister M K Stalin was aware of it, they said, adding the party will stand by Vijayabhaskar.

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