In a recent development, Central agencies have turned their focus on at least 10 out of the 36 Tamil Nadu Cabinet ministers, reported Indian Express.
The ruling DMK associates this with the BJP's efforts to strengthen its influence in a historically less prominent state for the party.
The latest raids on PWD and Highways Minister E V Velu on 3 November involved searches across multiple premises, leading Velu to claim that his aides were brought to tears under sustained pressure.
Other DMK veterans facing scrutiny include Water and Irrigation Minister Duraimurugan, Higher Education Minister K Ponmudy, and Rural Development Minister I Periyasamy.
Former excise minister K Senthil Balaji, who faced raids earlier, continues to be in custody.
There are also indications that the agencies might extend their probes to include other ministers under scrutiny for corruption allegations.
A senior DMK minister, speaking anonymously, views the raids as an attempt to hinder the party's functioning, noting that influential leaders in multiple constituencies are under scrutiny.
BJP's strategy in Tamil Nadu appears twofold: establishing a presence and curbing the influence of Dravidian parties with a stronghold in the state, mentions the DMK minister.
The DMK leadership also highlights that some cases under scrutiny date back decades and there is internal talk within the party that even Chief Minister Stalin might face a summons before the 2024 polls, akin to the situation faced by AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal in Delhi, potentially marring the DMK's image ahead of the elections.
Nayan Dwivedi is Staff Writer at Swarajya.
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