CBI raids 3 in 2019 Vellore Lok Sabha cash-for-vote case
The cash in the bundles of Rs 200 denomination was obtained from Canara Bank’s currency chest in exchange for other currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 2000 denomination, says the CBI.Updated: Sep 24, 2020, 21:30 IST
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has filed a case in connection with the alleged cash-for-vote scandal in Tamil Nadu’s Vellore during the 2019 Lok Sabha elections and conducted raids on a senior manager of Canara Bank and two private persons.
The alleged irregularities date back to March-April 2019 during the poll campaign in the Vellore Lok Sabha constituency, where DMK member of parliament DM Kathir Anand locked horns with the AIADMK-backed Puthia Neethi Katchi candidate AC Shanmugam when the Income Tax (IT) officials held surprise checks.
The Election Commission had cancelled the election at the constituency but when the re-election happened in August 2019, Kathir won the seat.
After registering a case on September 22, CBI teams on Thursday raided the premises of M Dayanidhi, a former senior manager of Canara Bank, Vellore branch, and two private persons - Damodaran and Srinivasan. Srinivasan is said to be a DMK functionary and Damodaran is his relative. All three have been named as accused in CBI FIR.
It is alleged that it was Damodaran who fetched a cache of Rs 11.48 crore unaccounted cash, in newly printed Rs 200 notes, kept in small bundles and that money was meant for distribution to voters in Vellore constituency during the election scheduled there on April 18, 2019.
This money was recovered by the I-T department on April 1, 2019 from the cement godown of Damodaran. The money was allegedly issued from the currency chest of Canara Bank branch there.
Allegedly, the CBI says, the cash in the bundles of Rs 200 denomination was obtained from Canara Bank’s currency chest in exchange for other currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 2000 denomination.
The CBI FIR says that Dayanidhi facilitated the exchange by inducing another public servant and falsifying the accounts to obtain the bundles of Rs 200 notes abusing his official position as a public servant by violating the laid down rules and procedures of the Canara Bank.
“Dayanidhi, being a public servant, in criminal conspiracy with other accused persons committed an act of criminal misconduct by extending undue favour to the other accused private persons Damodaran and Srinivasan. The currency was obtained for facilitating easy distribution of currency notes to the voters in the Vellore parliamentary constituency during the parliamentary election which was to be held on April 18, 2019 in turn promotes corruption,” the CBI said in the FIR.