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19 Nov 2018, Edition - 1224, Monday

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Tamilnadu News

Gutka scam returns to haunt AIADMK; CBI raids health minister and top cops

KV Lakshmana

Chennai : The Gutka scam has come to haunt the AIADMK after the CBI on Wednesday raided top cops – DGP TK Rajendran and former DGP and Chennai police commissioner S George for their alleged involvement in the multi-crore rupees scam. In simultaneous raids across 40 locations, including the premises of these two top cops, the CBI also raided the health minister C Vijayabhaskar.

The raids, according to sources began at 7 a.m. It is said that those raided were responsible for allowing illegal sale of Gutka , that is banned in Tamil Nadu. The scam, unearthed by the media, exposed the nexus between the police, politicians and scamsters.

Gutka manufacturers paid bribes to politicians and policemen to carry out their business even as the authorities were made to look the other way, allege activists.

The Gutka scam, over which opposition DMK raised a huge stink, will be reverberating in Tamil Nadu political landscape in the state and puts the AIADMK government in a spot. Moreover, the raids put a question mark over the AIADMK and its government on the corruption issue. Even the chief minister Edapaddi Palaniswami is facing serious corruption charges.

At a time like this, the CBI raids only put the spotlight on the corruption charges against the ruling AIADMK dispensation that is likely to cost it dear in the forthcoming parliament general elections. More important, the raids also put a question mark over the BJP’s alliance prospects as the ruling party at the centre can hardly be expected to have anything to do with a party that is perceived as corrupt by people.

This would blunt the BJP’s anti-corruption plank that it used to a telling effect in the 2014 general elections on a host of scandals that rocked the Manmohan Singh led UPA government.