Hours after President of India, Ram Nath Kovind cancelled Lok Sabha polling in Tamil Nadu’s Vellore constituency
on the recommendation of the Election Commission (EC) and Law Ministry, DMK candidate D M Kathir Anand wrote a strongly worded letter to the EC, expressing disappointment and appealing for a recall of the final order calling for cancellation.
“It appears that the entire exercise carried out by the Election Commission of India is only to favour the BJP-AIADMK combine,” wrote Anand.
The Election Commission had called for the cancellation of polling in Vellore
, after it was revealed that a total sum of Rs 11 crore in cash was recovered from a warehouse with links to Anand, by the IT Department.
“The raids were stage-managed by the ruling party to get a bogus report from the IT Department, which acted as judge, jury and executioner,” Anand said in his letter.
Kathir Anand added that the timing of the cancellation was also a suspect, and seemed politically motivated. He has also pointed out that not being given a chance to be heard was unfair.
“Since the Election Commission of India is bringing out this notification barely two days before the elections, and that too, without granting an opportunity of being heard, the entire move appears to be politically motivated and appears that the Election Commission of India is toeing the line of the ruling BJP party to help the BJP-AIADMK combine’s candidates,” said Kathir, in his letter.
The Vellore controversy came to light when EC and IT officials unearthed cash at locations with links to Anand, in Vellore. Anand has denied links to any of the individuals who are alleged to be in possession of the money.
“I am given to understand that the IT Department appears to have seized cash in a godown belonging to one Mr Srinivasan who is residing in a different constituency who has no connection whatsoever to me or my constituency,” said Anand in his letter.
The DMK candidate has said that should the commission not restore polling in Vellore, legal action could be an option on the part of the DMK. “I shall be constrained to initiate appropriate action before the constitutional court, including claiming damages, thereby holding you liable for all cost and consequences,” Anand signed off, in his letter.
Meanwhile, AIADMK candidate in Vellore, AC Shanmugam has moved the Madras High Court against cancellation of Lok Sabha polls in the constituency. Late last night, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E Palanisamy had said that the Election Commission could have barred the DMK candidate, D M Kathir Anand from contesting polls, instead of cancelling the election itself. A hearing in the court is currently underway.