AIADMK leader TTV Dhinakaran, a nephew of jailed party chief VK Sasikala, was on Monday accused of trying to bribe the Election Commission with crores of rupees to reclaim the party's disputed and now frozen "two leaves" symbol.
The issue which came to light after the arrest of his "close aide" from a Delhi hotel with a huge amount of cash, sparked of a political row.
Dhinakaran’s aide Sukash Chandrasekhar was nabbed from a south Delhi hotel on Monday. A NDTV report said that he had around Rs 1.3 crore in cash that he claimed was meant for bribing the EC. At the time of his arrest, he was also wearing accessories worth Rs 6.5 crore and was in possession of other luxurious items.
The report further said that Dhinakaran had allegedly told Chandrasekhar that he can “buy” the symbol for Rs 50 crore.
While Dhinakaran denied any links with the arrested accused, the Tamil Nadu's opposition PMK demanded dismissal of the AIADMK government.
After a long search for a judge, Chandrasekar was presented before a judge at her residence, who sent him to eight days police custody, sources said.
Chandrasekar reportedly told police that he was Dhinakaran's "middleman" and was asked to pay the money to the officials in exchange for the symbol.
The officer said the 27-year-old suspect, who is said to own a fleet of luxury cars, confessed he was playing the middleman.
Dhinakaran, who is the candidate of the ruling AIADMK faction for the RK Nagar assembly constituency in Chennai, told reporters there that he didn't know "anybody by the name Sukesh Chandrasekar" and called it a conspiracy to destroy the AIADMK — divided between two factions after its leader J Jayalalithaa died on 5 December while she was the Chief Minister.
TTV DhinakaranSomebody is scheming to destroy the AIADMK. I will meet the allegation legally. If I am summoned by Delhi Police, I will meet it legally.
Sasikala made Dhinakaran the party in-charge before she went to prison.
The other faction is led by O Panneerselvam, who was also close to Jayalalithaa and used to stand in for her as Chief Minister.
Although the two factions have been fighting over ownership of the AIADMK, on Monday night, after a press conference Tamil Nadu Minister Jayakumar hinted at a merge.
(With inputs from IANS.)
Join The Quint on WhatsApp. Type “JOIN” and send to 9910181818.