Authorities recovered over Rs 10 lakh from two locations during overnight rounds in Chennai's poll-bound Dr. Radhakrishnan (RK) Nagar, Tamil news channel Puthiya Thalaimurai (PT) reported today.
According to the report, Rs 9,90,000 was recovered from the residence of one Seenivaasan, and another Rs 1,28,000 from five individuals who police say are supporters of TTV Dinakaran, the General Secretary of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK).
Dinakaran now leads a faction of the AIADMK called the AIADMK Amma, after the Election Commission last month forbade the use of the party's name or election symbol during the April 12 by-election in RK Nagar, the late Jayalalithaa's former constituency.
Dinakaran is the nephew of AIADMK General Secretary VK Sasikala, and one of the by-poll candidates.
As many as 17 individuals are being interrogated in connection with last night's discoveries, the PT report said.
It's worth noting that they were made just hours after Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami - who belongs to the Dinakaran camp - said there was no need for his faction to buy votes, and that they hadn't done anything of the sort, according to Thanthi TV.
On March 31, at least two Tamil channels said a man arrested by Chennai police for allegedly bribing voters in RK Nagar was a Dinakaran supporter , but the AIADMK deputy chief later denied the allegations had any merit.
A rival faction of the AIADMK led by former Chief Minister O Panneerselvam - named the AIADMK Puratchi Thalaivar Amma - and the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) have both complained to the Election Commission that Team Dinakaran has been trying to purchase a mandate in RK Nagar.
In fact, the Panneersevam-led camp - which itself faces allegations that it's guilty of voter fraud (1) and election symbol manipulation (2) - told the poll panel even yesterday that Dinakaran supporters were distributing money in the constituency , PT reported.