Of course he will never! He is in ‘நாயர் புடிச்ச புலிவால்’!
CBDT on Kalaignar TV pay offs
Karuna orders gag on Chacko
THURSDAY, 26 JULY 2012 00:24 J GOPIKRISHNAN | NEW DELHI
DMK is in a rage over JPC chairman PC Chacko’s recent press briefing in which he quoted from a probe report by Income Tax officials in 2G scam to infer that Kalaignar TV received Rs 52 crore from 19 ‘fictitious’ Kolkata companies to pay back a part of Rs 214 crore kickback it got from scam accused Shahid Balwa’s companies.
DMK chief M Karunanidhi expressed displeasure to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi over Chacko’s damning press briefing and reportedly asked her to place a gag order on him. Three days ago, DMK leader TR Baalu met Congress president’s political secretary Ahmed Patel and is understood to have discussed the issue with him.
The upshot of it was cancellation of JPC chairman’s routine press briefing after the committee meeting on Tuesday.
On July 18, Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) chairman and top I-T brass had briefed the JPC on the progress of money trail probe in of 2G scam in the presence of Finance Secretary RS Gujral. After the JPC meet, Chacko had briefed the media and detailed the I-T officials’ findings and said that probe is on in the TV channel’s receipt of Rs 52 crore from the non-existent 19 Kolkata-based companies.
According to sources, next day itself Karunanidhi called up Sonia and expressed his displeasure on the content of the press briefing. In a follow-up action, Baalu met Ahmed Patel and insisted that “no such embarrassment to his party leader’s family should take place in future”.
DMK’s muscle flexing yielded results. Chacko did not hold any press briefing after the July 24 meeting in which CBI director AP Singh was present.
According to senior DMK leaders, Karunanidhi also expressed his anger to his party colleague and Minister of State for Revenue Palanimanickam since the CBDT comes under his charge. The DMK supremo asked him to explain how CBDT could make such damning deposition before JPC, when a DMK leader was the Minister of the department. Sources said that Karunanidhi is expected to withdraw Palanimanickam from the Cabinet in the next reshuffle due to his failure to protect the interests of the DMK chief daughter in the 2G scam.
In the last week of June, DMK district secretaries’ conference in Chennai also blamed Palanimanickam for not being able to shield the party in the 2G scam probe.
The CBDT officials had briefed JPC that Kalaignar TV returned the Rs 214 cr kickback to Balwa linked companies by collecting money from several corporates. The Income Tax probe found that Rs 52 core was sourced from 19 non-existent Kolkata-based companies. Among the corporate, Kalaignar TV collected money from BCCI chief N Srinivasan’s India Cements and Vijay Mallya’s liquor companies.
According to CBI chargesheet, Kalaignar TV accepted a bribe of 214 crore from Balwa for the favour granted to him by former Telecom Minister A Raja of the DMK.