Guess who is going to suffer collateral damage as the state BJP and the DMK slug it out in Tamil Nadu?

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BySouth First Desk

Published May 01, 2023 | 5:49 PM Updated May 04, 2023 | 9:57 AM

Guess who is going to suffer collateral damage as the state BJP and the DMK slug it out in Tamil Nadu?

The Tamil Nadu BJP chief K Annamalai, upping the ante against the ruling DMK on the corruption front, said he has filed CBI complaint — “with all the proof” — against Chief Minister MK Stalin.

The plaint, he informed reporters, related to an alleged bribe that a US-based firm paid Stalin’s party as quid pro quo for being allotted work on the Chennai Metro Rail Limited’s Phase I in 2010.

Given that the complaint has been filed by a BJP leader — and that too against an Opposition politician — we are sure the CBI will pursue the matter with admirable speed and diligence.

Now, should the BJP’s ally in the state, the AIADMK, worry about this development? On the face of it, no. But read on to learn why the party’s leaders may bear the brunt of the DMK-BJP joust.

A highly placed source in the DMK tells South First that the party, well aware of the implications of the CBI complaint, is fast moving to counter the move — on the political front.

“The BJP is trying to create a perception and tag the DMK as a corrupt party by filing a complaint against the chief minister,” our source says, adding that the party would respond by pressing ahead with the slew of corruption cases filed against former AIADMK ministers — and there would “soon be arrests in those cases”.

“By taking action against the corrupt former ministers, we can break the public perception that the BJP is seeking to create,” the DMK functionary believes.

It may be noted that P Kandasamy, the DGP heading the Directorate of Vigilance and the Anti Corruption (DVAC), retired on 30 April. And South First learns that moves are afoot to appoint a person who is “capable enough” to speed up action on the graft charges against former AIADMK ministers.

According to sources, the new DVAC DGP will be chosen by the chief minister himself from among one of the following senior IPS officers: G Venkatraman, Davidson Devasirvatham, BK Ravi, Abhash Kumar, TV Ravichandran, or Amaraesh Pujari.

Kandasamy, incidentally, was also a direct choice of Chief Minister Stalin to head the DVAC and was tasked with taking down corrupt former ministers.

Among those raided by Kandasamy were former AIADMK ministers SP Velumani (municipal administration), P Thangamani (electricity), C Vijayabaskar (health), KP Anbalagan (higher education), and KC Veeramani (commercial taxes).

However, no further action was taken against any of them them. The only former minister arrested by DVAC was KT Rajenthra Bhalaji and that too in a cheating case.

Will things change under the new DVAC DGP? We’ll know soon enough.