I-T unearths big money in Vellore; Seizure linked to Durai Murugan

Cash was seized from gunny bags at Vellore.

Chennai: A couple of days after it raided places linked to DMK treasurer and former Minister Durai Murugan, the Income-Tax (I-T) department today unearthed cash in huge quantities from a cement godown and other places in Vellore.

According to I-T officials, the cash was kept in gunny bags and carton boxes and it was shifted to the godown from a college run by Durai Murugan’s son Kathir Anand, who is the DMK’s candidate of Vellore.

Durai Murugan, his family members and friends came under the I-T scanner a few days ago. This morning, the former Minister and his son approached the High Court with a plea that the ongoing raids have disturbed their election campaigns.

As per sources, the massive money was kept to bribe voters. The plan was to hand over the cash to representatives of each constituency and then distribute it to the voters. Even as the exact amount of seizure is not known, sources say it was to the tune of Rs 9.5 crore.

Meanwhile, I-T sleuths also conducted a raid at the residence of Durai Murugan’s friend Srinivasan in Katpadi.
Speaking to News Today, a highly placed source in I-T department said, “The team conducting the raids are led by officers from Delhi and Duraimurugan had been on the list of tax evaders for a while.”

It may be noted that two days ago, a team of I-T sleuths, based on information from a flying squad about cash being stored at the residence of Durai Murugan, initiated the raid.

Apart from Durai Murugan’s residence, searches were carried out in a CBSE school and college owned by his son.carried out. High drama took place when the team arrived for searches. DMK legal cell functionaries refused to allow them without a warrant.

Reacting to the raid at his house, Durai Murugan had said he would not be cowed down by such acts. He alleged that the raids were being conducted because his son’s winning prospects were bright.

The raid at his Katpadi residence which lasted for hours and resulted in the seizure of Rs 10 lakh. “About Rs 19 lakh was found. After allowing cash declaration in election affidavit, an amount of Rs 10 lakh was determined as excess,” sources said.

EC warns action
Tamilnadu Chief Electoral Officer Satyabrata Sahoo today said action will be taken if candidate (Durai Murugan’s son Kathir Anand) is linked to the money seized during the raid. “If the candidate’s involvement is found, it will be intimated to the EC and action will be taken,” he said.

 

NT Bureau