Chennai: The Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) on Tuesday moved the Madras High Court seeking a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) into alleged payoffs to some ruling All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) MLAs ahead of the trust vote by the K Palanisamy government last February.
Making a special mention before the first bench comprising Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sundar, senior counsel R Shanmugasundaram referred to reports in a section of media about the alleged pay-offs of crores of rupees to some MLAs for their support to the trust vote.
The counsel, appearing on behalf of DMK working president and leader of the Opposition in the assembly MK Stalin, said they would like to file the miscellaneous petition now seeking a CBI and DRI inquiry into the alleged pay-offs.
Stating that a probe by the CBI and the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence was very much needed, he sought leave of the court to file the miscellaneous petition in this regard.
Stalin’s PIL challenging the trust vote is pending in the court.
Shanmugasundaram also told the court that the DMK had already questioned the manner in which the AIADMK MLAs were ‘confined’ in a resort and brought to the assembly for the trust vote.
Allowing the counsel to file the petition for the CBI and the DRI probe, the bench said it would be taken up in regular course for hearing on Friday.
TV footage had purportedly showed AIADMK’s Madurai (South) MLA Saravanan making some claims of pay-offs to ruling party legislators ahead of the February 18 trust vote.
The MLA, however, has said the voice in the footage was not his.
The developments come against the backdrop of the state assembly session commencing tomorrow.
On February 18, Palaniswamy had won the trust vote 122-11 in the 234-member Assembly aided by the eviction of main Opposition DMK and walkout by its allies, amid stormy scenes during which mikes were uprooted, chairs toppled and sheets of papers torn.
In the PIL, Stalin has sought to declare the confidence vote null and void claiming that it was conducted in “contravention” of the Assembly rules.