The AIADMK camp is in a state of shock as a series of Income-Tax raids were conducted this morning against SPK group of companies led by contractor Seyyadurai in Aruppukottai and other parts of Tamil Nadu. The IT raids are seen as the BJP’s response to the challenged posed by AIADMK Minister D Jayakumar who cautioned BJP leaders against carrying on a tirade against the AIADMK and its administration in the State.
Ties between the two ruling parties had reached an all-time low after the visit of BJP National President Amit Shah who lashed out at corruption in the State and lamented that Tamil Nadu led the country in corruption. Although Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami and Deputy Chief Minister O Pannerselvam, who lead the party, have not directly commented on the BJP attack, it has chosen to give a fitting reply through Fisheries Minister Jayakumar who functions as the unofficial spokesman of the CM.
Jayakumar said the AIADMK was a big party with a large cadre base and it should not be forced by the BJP to give a powerful reply.
Barely a day later, the Income-Tax department has swooped down on contractor Seyyadurai’s offices and complexes in Aruppukottai, Poes Garden in Chennai and other parts of Tamil Nadu.
The IT department sources have revealed in calculated leaks that over Rs 80 crore was found at these places and this money could be termed as unaccounted.
At least 30 places of the SPK group were searched simultaneously by the IT department. Th places included his textile firm in Kallakurichi, and three houses.
Seyyadurai is said to be close to the sons of the chief minister and the deputy chief minister. He is a top-ranking contractor engaged by the Highways department for several big projects.
60-year-old Seyyadurai belongs to Palayampatti near Aruppukottai in Virudhunagar district. The SPK company is now engaged in conversion of the road from Maattudhavani to Tirumangalam in Madurai district to four-lane traffic.
A few days ago, raids against the Christy group of companies which was engaged in supply of eggs to the Tamil Nadu government nutritious noon meal scheme for children had rattled the AIADMK government. The raids drew derisive comments from BJP leaders. In recent times, BJP’s Union Minister from Tamil Nadu, Pon Radhakrishnan has been taking pot shots at the AIADMK government.
Today’s fresh round of IT raids has caused concern in the AIADMK camp which so far was under the impression that it had the protection of the NDA government at the Centre.
Political observers wonder if the IT raids would reach the logical conclusion as there was no tangible conclusion after the raids against an AIADMK minister and party functionaries before the RK Nagar by-poll when papers relating to disbursement of Rs 90 crore were said to have been recovered.
Be that as it may, the mood in the AIADMK camp is one of fear as happened after the raids at the office of the former chief secretary at the State Secretariat just a stone’s throw away from the room of the then chief minister O Panneerselvam.
A jittery AIADMK is wondering if the collision between the two parties would intensify.