Stalin de­mands SIT in­quiry into Ko­danad es­tate break-in

Says DMK will make rep­re­sen­ta­tions to Pres­i­dent, Gov­er­nor

The Hindu - - TAMIL NADU - Spe­cial Cor­re­spon­dent

DMK pres­i­dent M.K. Stalin on Sun­day said his party would make rep­re­sen­ta­tions to Pres­i­dent Ram Nath Kovind and Tamil Nadu Gov­er­nor Ban­war­i­lal Puro­hit, seek­ing a probe by a Spe­cial In­ves­ti­ga­tion Team (SIT) into the mur­der and break-in at for­mer Chief Min­is­ter Jay­alalithaa’s Ko­danad Es­tate bun­ga­low in 2017 and the sub­se­quent “mys­te­ri­ous” deaths of key sus­pects in the case.

Re­fer­ring to claims by for­mer Te­helka jour­nal­ist Sa­muel Mathew and two of the ac­cused in the Ko­danad case that Chief Min­is­ter Edap­padi K. Palaniswami had a role in the break-in at the bun­ga­low, the mur­der of se­cu­rity guard Rao Ba­hadur and the death of key sus­pect Kana­garaj (Jay­alalithaa’s for­mer driver), Mr. Stalin said they war­ranted an SIT probe.

“We have sought an ap­point­ment with the Gov­er­nor to­mor­row (Mon­day), and if he agrees to meet us, we will ex­plain ev­ery­thing to him. If no ac­tion is taken, we will ap­proach the court,” he told re­porters at Anna Ari­valayam.

Mr. Stalin said that the Ko­danad Es­tate’s CCTV op­er­a­tor, Di­neshku­mar, had com­mit­ted sui­cide, and the wife and daugh­ter of Sayan, who was al­legedly di­rected by Kana­garaj to “steal money” from the es­tate, were killed in an ac­ci­dent.

‘Mys­tery be­hind deaths’

“There is a mys­tery be­hind these deaths. We will cer­tainly be happy if the Chief Min­is­ter is proven in­no­cent af­ter a probe,” he said, re­call­ing the claims made by Mr. Mathew, Sayan and Manoj, another ac­cused, at a press con­fer­ence in New Delhi on Fri­day.

De­mand­ing se­cu­rity cover for Mr. Mathew, Sayan and oth­ers, the DMK leader said the SIT probe should be mon­i­tored by the Madras High Court, and that Mr. Palaniswami should im­me­di­ately re­sign from his post.

“The probe is not just against Mr. Palaniswami. His Cabi­net col­leagues and [Jay­alalithaa’s jailed aide] Sasikala's fam­ily mem­bers should also be sub­jected to an in­quiry. What­ever hap­pened to the ₹2,000 crore taken from Ko­danad should be ex­plained to the peo­ple,” he said.

Re­call­ing the CM’s in­ter­ac­tion with the me­dia on the sub­ject, Mr. Stalin said Mr. Palaniswami had not de­nied knowl­edge of Kana­garaj and Sayan and the ₹2,000 crore (which is claimed to have been looted). “His face turned black and he was not able to an­swer Mr. Mathew’s al­le­ga­tions. He also did not say that Kana­garaj and the wife and daugh­ter of Sayan had died in a road ac­ci­dent. He also did not deny the sui­cide of Di­neshku­mar,” the DMK pres­i­dent claimed.

M.K. Stalin

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