The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) staged a walkout from the Tamil Nadu Assembly on Friday after Speaker P Dhanapal denied permission to raise the ‘Gutkha scam’ in the house. The leader of the Opposition MK Stalin sought to speak on the matter in the Zero Hour, but the Speaker did not allow it. At this, the DMK members were on their feet and insisted that they should be allowed to raise the issue. As the Speaker did not relent, Stalin led his party members out of the House.
Later, talking to reporters outside the Assembly, he said: “Right from the beginning, we have been demanding a CBI probe into the gutkha scam. But we are not allowed to raise the issue in the House. “Citing the Income Tax department report submitted to the state government alleging that money was paid to a Minister and senior police officials, he demanded the resignation of Health Minister C Vijayabaskar and dropping of police chief TK Rajendran, who was the Chennai City Police Commissioner when the scam took place, for their alleged involvement in it.
The DMK had earlier staged a walk out on Wednesday on the same issue after the Speaker refused permission. Stalin later said the DMK also wanted to raise the shifting of honest IAS officer VK Jeyakodi, appointed as Vigilance Commissioner to monitor the probe into the multi-crore scam, adding the official was transferred to shield the guilty.During an investigation by the Income Tax Department, a gutkha manufacturer had alleged that he paid huge sums of money as a bribe to a Minister, two top police officers and others in return for being allowed to sell the banned tobacco products in and around Chennai.