I-T Dept. searches premises linked to Minister E V Velu in Tiruvannamalai

The Income Tax department on Friday raided multiple locations in Tamil Nadu linked to state minister EV Velu, the fourth senior DMK leader to face the heat of the central agencies.

Velu holds the portfolios of public works, highways and minor ports in the MK Stalin-led cabinet.

Raids were conducted in more than 40 locations across the state, including Velu’s home town in Tiruvannamalai, an official aware of the development said. “Residences, offices and educational institutions, including Arunai Engineering College owned by him, were searched. Contractors of the public works department (PWD) too have come under the I-T scanner,” the official said.

Velu, known to be close to chief minister Stalin, was the food minister in the previous DMK cabinet from 2006-2011.

Velu is the fourth senior DMK leader to be raided by federal agencies in the past few months. His cabinet colleague V Senthil Balaji is currently lodged in Puzhal Central Prison under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act filed by the Enforcement Directorate. The ED also raided and questioned higher education minister K Ponmudy. The I-T department last month raided Arakkonam MP S Jagathrakshagan.