The Income Tax department has summoned Tamil Nadu Health Minister C Vijayabhaskar, actor-politician R Sarath Kumar and a noted educationist to appear before it in Chennai on Monday in connection with a tax evasion probe.
“Yes. It is a normal procedure,” IT sources told PTI when asked whether the department has issued summons to the three persons including the Vice-Chancellor of Tamil Nadu Dr M G R Medical University, Geethalakshmi.
The health minister, meanwhile, said he would appear before the department tomorrow and extend his full cooperation to the probe.
“I have received the summons. I am a law-abiding citizen. So, tomorrow morning I will definitely be in the IT office and give my full cooperation,” he said.
On Saturday, Vijayabhaskar’s father Chinnathambi, and a relative had appeared before the department in Tiruchirapalli in connection with the April 7 searches.
Nearly 100 sleuths of the IT department along with security personnel had conducted searches at over 30 locations across the state belonging to the official residence and properties owned by Vijayabhaskar and also at the home of Sarath Kumar in Chennai.
The searches on the premises of an associate of the minister allegedly revealed routing of Rs 89 crore for “distribution to voters” in R K Nagar Assembly constituency which goes to the poll on April 12.
Vijayabaskar is a prominent loyalist of AIADMK (Amma) faction’s candidate T T V Dinakaran for the R K Nagar bypoll and the first state minister to come under the lens of tax men. He is among the key campaigners in the bypoll.
Vijayabaskar had slammed the raids by the I-T department saying, “their intentions were not fulfilled.”
“They have not seized any unaccounted money or documents. Their intentions are not fulfilled by the raids,” he had said.
The bypoll to the R K Nagar Constituency has been necessitated due to the death of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalitha in December 2016.