Deliberate and wanton cancellation of assets details in the affidavit filed along with the nomination documents of DMK Chief M K Stalin, his son Udayanidhi Stalin and party general secretary Durai Murugan have raised eye-brows in political circles in the poll-bound Tamil Nadu.
In an affidavit filed in Madras High Court, senior party leader and Rajya Sabha MP Alandur Bharati stated that Durai Murugan from whom crores of rupees intended for distribution with ward wise list for his son’s election was seized in Vellore prior to the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, is not the DMK general secretary and permanent trustee of DMK is not the same. Organizer weekly had given a detailed account on this recently.
Tamil Nadu goes to assembly polls on 6th April. DMK Chief M K Stalin filed nomination in Chennai Kolatthur assembly constituency while his son and youth wing leader Udhaya Nidhi Stalin is contesting from Chepauk-Thiruvallikeni constituency. It is his maiden attempt. He declared assets worth Rs.33 crore, an income of Rs.4.89 lakh for 2019-20 and a liability of Rs.1.35 lakh. His wife Krithika has assets worth Rs. 1.15 core and an income of Rs.17.4 lakh for the same period. He has listed 22 criminal cases that have been filed against him. While M K Stalin declared assets worth Rs.7.2 core in his affidavit claiming his profession as social service and his income for 2019-20 was Rs. 29 lakhs. His wife Durga and mother of Udhayanidhi, has assets worth Rs.1.7 crore and an income of Rs.4.7 lakh for the same year. Durga Stalin said she is a producer. Both Stalin and Durga’s total assets amount to Rs. 8.89 crore, as per the affidavit file by Stalin.
Actor Kamal Hassan has Rs.176.9 crore, his party vice president R Mahendran has declared assets worth Rs. 160 crore, actress Kushboo claimed to have assets over 22 crores. But Stalin, a former Dy Chief Minister, Chennai Corporation Mayor, sitting MLA and son of former CM Karunanidhi have declared assets below ten crores. He claimed he did not own a car, house and even a bicycle.
Former government employee Savukku Shankar in an interview to a youtube channel raised the above question. He said, “Stalin during a pre-election image-building exercise, peddled a cycle worth 3.25 lakhs with full safety gear including imported cooling glass. His son, who owns a Range Rover car worth over 1.75 crores, could have bought a second car at least a Maruthi Alto for his father. Stalin and their son are liars which have been proved now. If Stalin says he does not own a car, wouldn’t the public laugh at him? But Udayanidhi’s assets are over 40 crores but he declared less. He is answerable if any probe ordered in due course of time”.
Senior Journalist Nambi Narayanan said how this was possible for Stalin to declare assets of Rs.5.8 crore while his Teynampet Chitranjan Road bungalow where he resides alone will be worth about Rs.20 cores”. Jayaram Venkatesan of this NGO said he could not find the Chitranjan road bungalow in the affidavit. “So we decided to find out who owns Stalin’s Chitranjgan Roadhouse. What we found was shocking. It has been bought by a company called “Snow Housing Private Limited” for Rs. 11.62 crores in 2007-08. The main directors of this company include Stalin’s wife Durga Stalin and son Udhayanidhi Stalin. How did this company fund the purchase of the property? Rs.10.34 crore has been provided to the company as a personal loan by Udhaya Nidhi Stalin. Now, this company has allotted the house as rent-free accommodation to Duragavathi Stalin ie his mother” he elaborated.
Jayaram Venkatesan further claimed, “two more pieces of the land bought in Neelangarai have been lying idle as stock for more than 5 years. Other than this property, Snow Housing company do not seem to undertake any other active operations. In 2007, when this transaction took place, Udhayanidhi Stalin had not even started his acting career or in the production and distribution of films through his Red Giant Movies. It commences business only in 2008. MK Stalin, in 2006, had declared total assets of only Rs. 1.4 crore. Therefore how did Udhayanidhi accumulated enough wealth to be able to lend Rs.10.3 crore in 2007. Even if he had genuine sources of income, why this complex web to buy the house for his parents in the name of a company instead of his own name? “There was a land grab charges against Stalin after the Jayalalithaa government came to power in 2011. According to the case, one P Venugopal Reddy bought the 2.5 grounds of a house and land adjacent to Stalin’s posh Chitranjan Salai residence. On August 10, 2008, during the DMK rule, it was bought by P Venugopal Reddy for Rs.5.54 crore which was later leased to Udhayanidhi’s film production company. When AIADMK came to power, the original owner N Seshadri Kumar lodged a complaint claiming that he was threatened to part with the property and implicated Stalin, his son and their friend Raja Shankar among others. They obtained anticipatory bail except for Stalin. While it was in pending High Court, Stalin, Seshadri entered into a compromise and withdrew the case.
In another incident, Kalaignar TV, according to ED complaint, arranged funds to pay back the amount with the interest to Cineyug Films to conceal the proceeds of crime under the cloak of repayment of a loan. ED alleged in 2G spectrum case against A Raja, Kanimozhi( sister of Stalin) and 10 others that the refund of ‘ proceeds of crime’ by Kalaignar TV to Dyanmix Reality made via two other firms had been arranged in a short duration from various entities to cover their tracks.
Nambi Narayanan wondered Stalin son had more income than his father who was a full-time politician and held posts. I am not taking into their other investments both movable and immovable, but these Chitranjan Road residence details are murkier. EC or someone should file a case seeking a thorough investigation into the whole affair? In the affidavit, the candidate has to give his, spouse, son, daughter, father, mother’s asset details. In this case, they have hidden the facts. It needs to be probed”.
“Naam Tamizhar Katchi founder Seeman, who is known for lies as truth, has declared Rs 10,000 as his annual income. He runs a political party, has luxury SUVs, foreign breed dogs. In 2018-19 his annual income was Rs.12,716. His monthly income was Rs.1010 roughly. In 2016-17 it was Rs.1000 plus. In the previous year, his wife income was shown as Rs.12,939. In 2015, Seeman’s wife bought a property worth Rs.24 lakh but without any income? How ? in 2013 he bought a luxury car. With Rs.1000 income, how he managed to fuel and service expenses? He is also making fool of us”, Savukku Shankar claimed.
Chartered Accountant Seshadri Sri Ram and advocate Aswathaman said these things are happening as the Election commission has no teeth. It can if any complaints will ask for details. It’s a prime duty it conduct polls and not to engage in a legal battle. The laws are insufficient and a lot of loopholes. For example, an election case filed by Kannappan of AIADMK who lost to former Union Minister P Chidambaram in recounting in 2009 Lok Sabha elections was disposed of recently in favour of Chidambaram. Chidambaram was a tenant in Delhi in a house owned by his wife, by paying rent. In the same way, Stalin’s wife was residing without any rent in his son’s house and its current worth more than 20 crores.
Durai Murugan in 2016 claimed he did his post-graduation in Pachaiyappa’s college. In the 2021 affidavit, he said he got an MA degree from Utkal University, Bhubaneswar? Why this discrepancy. They gave the least importance to the affidavit.
A source in DMK claimed that Savukku Shankar and the you-tube channel were tasked to defame Udhyanidhi Stalin by Jagath Gasper Raj and Kanimozhi duo. “It is the culmination of inter-family rivalry. That is why they have cornered Stalin, Udhayanidhi. If Udhyanidhi becomes stronger, it will spoil the political ambitions of Kanimozhi in taking over the party affairs and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister” he explained. This could be a reason, but not convincing many in the state.