After income tax officials raided the Chennai residence of Tamil Nadu Health Minister Dr C Vijayabaskar, the state Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has welcomed the move and demanded that the Election Commission should ensure free and fair elections during the R.K. Nagar assembly bye-elections.
Talking to ANI here, Tamil Nadu State BJP President Tamilisai Soundararjan welcomed the IT raid at the state's health minister's residence and demanded that more IT raids should be conducted at the residences of the leaders of both factions of All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) as "these parties are using money and muscle power to muzzle candidates of other political parties".
She refuted the AAIDMK charge that the central government headed by the BJP was behind the raids.
She accused both the AIADMK of inventing a 'new science' of distributing money to woo R.K. Nagar voters.
"Not only they are distributing cash, but also gifts. Even, voters are being asked to come to the different constituencies with the pre-set token to get cash. They have even assured 57000 voters to provide houses after the elections," she said, adding how a poor voter could deny such lucrative bribes and vote for other parties.
Castigating the move of Panneerselvam faction's campaigning with dummy of Jayalalithaa's body in a coffin, the BJP leader said this move proves they are not concerned about the late Jayalalitha and her legacy but only about votes.
She wondered that what actually is going on in Tamil Nadu wherein one AIADMK group is doing politics with money and the other group is doing politics with the coffin.
She accused the ruling AIADMK for using money and muscle power and making it difficult for other parties, especially the BJP to campaign.
She demanded that shadow of the power, money and muscle should not be there so that a straight forward party like the BJP can gain the ground.
Income tax officials on Friday morning raided several premises belonging to Vijayabaskar and his relatives in Chennai and other districts in the wake of complaints that he was involved in cash distribution to voters in RK Nagar constituency where a bye-election will be held on April 12.
The IT department also conducted searches on the premises of actor and All India Samathuva Makkal Katchi leader R Sarathkumar, former AIA DMK legislator Chitlapakkam Rajendran and vice-chancellor of Dr MGR Medical University S Geethalakshmi.