There is fresh trouble for incarcerated former general secretary of AIADMK Sasikala and her family as Income Tax officials conduct raids on the offices belonging to Jaya TV and Namadhu MGR in Ekkattuhangal in Chennai.
Around 10 officials of the income tax investigation department entered the office of the TV channel at Ekkatthuthangal around 6am on Thursday morning.
A senior IT official told The Hindu, “Yes, the search is on. This is a part of our operation called clean money,” he added.
The IT department is conducting raids on Sasikala’s and her family’s property at 187 places across Tamil Nadu. The IT department has termed the raid as ‘Operation Clean Black Money’ and is looking into the affairs of ten groups of companies belonging to Sasikala and her family.
IT sleuths have also raided the houses of Sasikala aide Ilavarasi’s son Vivek Jayaraman’s house at No. 13 Ramanadhan street, Mahalingapuram, daughter Krishnapriya’s house and also Sasikala’s nephew TTV Dhinakaran’s home.
Jaya TV, started by former Chief minister J Jayalalithaa in 1999 acts as a mouthpiece of the AIADMK. The operations of the media house have been controlled by the members of the Sasikala family, led by her nephew Vivek Jayaraman. Vivek Jayaraman is the son of Sasikala aide Ilavarasi. The channel has been highly critical of the functioning of the AIADMK government after the unification of the factions led by chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and former chief minister O Panneerselvam in August, reported the Times of India.
Initial reports suggest that 20 office premises of Jaya TV, Jazz cinemas and Namadhu MGR were raided.
Jazz cinemas is owned and operated by Vivek Jayakumar and other members of the family. It was bought by the family from the Sathyam Cinemas group amidst rumours of a forceful buyout.
Namadhu MGR is the newsprint mouthpiece of the AIADMK and is under the control of TTV Dhinakaran.
This raid will have a severe impact on TTV Dhinakaran’s political career and Sasikala’s jail-time. Sasikala holds most number of shares in both Jaya TV and Namadhu MGR and will held a main accused if the IT sleuths unearth evidences of concealment of income and evasion of tax.
Raids were also carried out at their Ooty and Kodanadu estates.