Cash-for-vote: Stalin hits out at Palaniswami, other over quashing of FIR
DMK President M.K. Stalin on Tuesday demanded registration of criminal cases against Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K. Palaniswami, officials of Election Commission, state police and also the person who filed a petition seeking cancellation of the FIR registered in the R.K. Nagar cash-for-vote case.
Stalin also demanded registration of a First Information Report (FIR) on the basis of the documents provided by the Income Tax (IT) department. The Election Commission itself had recommended that the case is probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
On Monday, the Tamil Nadu government informed a two-member bench of the Madras High Court that a single judge bench of the high court had quashed in March the FIR registered against unnamed persons for alleged distribution of cash to the voters of R.K. Nagar assembly constituency.
On April 7, 2017, a couple of days before the bypoll in R.K. Nagar constituency, the IT department raided the house of state Health Minister C. Vijayabaskar and seized documents that showed the alleged distribution of huge cash to voters in the constituency. The documents also contained the names of Palaniswami and other ministers.
Subsequently, the bypoll was postponed.
Stalin said the details of the seizure were given to the Election Commission by the IT department. The poll body wrote to the Chennai Police Commissioner to register a case.
An FIR was registered only on the orders of the Madras High Court and after securing the permission of the Magistrate. The FIR did not contain the names Vijayabaskar, Palaniswami and other state ministers.
The DMK candidate N. Marudhu Ganesh and two others had filed a case to transfer the probe to CBI in 2017.
Stalin alleged that the state government had concealed from the single judge the fact that the FIR was registered after Magistrate's permission and also a case is pending with the division bench.
PMK founder S. Ramadoss said the quashing of the FIR is nothing but the murder of justice and shows that the government can blindfold of the judiciary and bury any case.
Ramadoss also demanded that the probe is handed over to the CBI.
(With inputs from agencies.)