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Income Tax report, police diary sought in by-poll issue

The plea seeking to register an FIR against Chief Minister Edappadi K Palanisamy, TTV Dinakaran and five others for allegedly distributing cash to voters in the RK Nagar by-poll hotted up with the High Court seeking for the 34page Income Tax report based on which the Election Commission had directed the police to file an FIR and the police diary pertaining to the case.

Income Tax report, police diary sought in by-poll issue
Leader of Opposition MK Stalin walking out of the Assembly


A division bench comprising Justice M Sathyanarayanan and Justice M Sundar, which heard the arguments by the EC’s counsel, the Advocate General appearing for the police and that of the petitioner’s counsel, said, “After hearing all the counsels this court is of the view that the annex to the letter dated April 18 of the EC and the Case Diary in crime 583/17 registered by Abhiramapuram police station are required. 

Respective counsels undertook to produce the same. Posted to June 23.” Earlier, when the case came up for hearing and advocate Duraiswamy appearing for the petitioner MP Vairakannan, said besides provisions available under Indian Penal Code (171 B) and section 123 in the Representation of the People Act, 1951, which deals with gratification to any person with the object of inducing him or any other person to exercise any electoral right or of rewarding any person for having exercised any such right, insisted that an FIR has to be registered against the persons involved. 

He noted that EC in response to a specific question, as what action has been proposed against Dinakaran, Palanisamy, Sengottaiyan, Velumani, Sellur K Raju, Thangamani and Vijaya Baskar, had said that the Commission has directed that an FIR may be filed by the Returning Officer in the instant case vide the Commissions’ letter dated April 18. 

However, as the bench was clarifying that it was a non-cognisable offence, the counsel appearing for the EC, said the plea was not maintainable as an FIR in the case was already filed in April. Handing over a copy of the same to the bench and the petitioner’s counsel, he said the police had handed over the FIR only on Friday, while he was dealing with another case pertaining to RK Nagar by-election.

Advocate General R Muthukumaraswamy stated that since the FIR has been filed and investigation is under progress, the plea was not maintainable. However, the petitioner’s counsel insisted that the socalled FIR was a blank paper, with not even a zero in it. He said the FIR will not stand the scrutiny of law as no names have been mentioned. 

But, the bench directed EC’s counsel to submit the annex which pertains to the report dated April 9, 2017, from the Income Tax department regarding a search action resulting in seizure of certain documents indicating large scale distribution of money to induce/bribe voter to influence the by-election in RK Nagar, which is an offence under section 171B of the Indian Penal Code.

DMK’s plea on sting adjourned to Friday
The Madras High Court on Monday adjourned the impleading petition moved by DMK leader MK Stalin seeking a probe by both CBI and DRI on a sting expose that AIADMK MLAs were bribed ahead of the trust vote, after the counsel appearing for Chief Minister Edappadi K Palanisamy sought time to file the counter.
A division bench comprising Justice M Sathyanarayanan and Justice M Sundar, before whom the petition came up, posted the case to June 23 after recording the submission made by CM’s counsel R Krishnamoorthy seeking time. 
The bench said, “Objecting the petition filed by Stalin seeking to implead the CBI and DRI into the pay offs to the ruling AIADMK party legislators and its allies, senior counsel R Krishnamoorthy appeared on behalf of the Chief Minister and sought time for filing counter to the impleading petition.” 
The main writ petition, filed by Stalin challenging the validity of confidence motion by the Chief Minister, is pending adjudication by the High Court. Now, following the sting expose, Stalin, said, “This new revelation constitutes prima facie material evidence which has a significant bearing on the outcome of the main writ petition, filed by me and posted for further hearing to July 11, 2017.” He also noted that the video recordings of the sting operation reveal that the vote of confidence was vitiated by inducements.

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