Income tax officials conducted late-night raid at late J Jayalalithaa’s residence Poes Garden on Friday. A laptop, a desktop and few pen drives were seized by the investigative wing officials from two rooms used by VK Sasikala during the search operation. During the raids, IT dept also conducted searches at a room used by Jayalalithaa’s personal assistant Poongundran in the presence of CEO of Jaya TV Vivek Jayaraman.
Following the news of raids, AIADMK workers and supporters arrived at Poes Garden in large numbers and started raising slogans against BJP-led NDA govt at the Centre. Earlier this week, IT officials had conducted raids on premises of Jaya TV and residences of Sasikala’s kin in a five-day operation and detected tax evasion on an income of Rs 1,430 crores. “As many as 15 bank lockers were frozen and several kilograms of gold and diamond jewellery that were claimed to have been accounted for were kept under safe custody for evaluation,” The Hindu quoted a source as saying.
The places that were raided by the Income Tax officials included the residence of Sasikala’s husband M. Natarajan, in Thanjavur, Kodanad Tea Estate belonging to late Tamil Nadu CM J. Jayalalithaa, Jazz Cinemas, Midas Distilleries, Sharada Paper and Boards, Senthil Group of Companies, Nilgiri Furniture in Coimbatore, Jaya TV, Namadhu MGR and several other locations in Tamil Nadu, Puducherry, Hyderabad and Bengaluru. The search operation was kept secret. The raiding tax officials had hired private cabs and pasted wedding stickers on the windscreens of vehicles in a bid to avoid suspicion.
Former All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) General Secretary VK Sasikala is currently lodged in a Bengaluru jail in a corruption case. She was removed from her position when Tamil Nadu CM EPS joined hands with rebel leader OPS. The infighting in the party had started after the death of former chief minister J Jayalalithaa.