Enforcement Directorate searches premises of persons linked to arrested T.N. Minister Senthilbalaji

The ED searched the residence of arrested Minister Senthilbalaji’s personal assistant and the premises of a finance company, a granite firm and a construction firm, among other locations in Karur and Coimbatore

Updated - August 03, 2023 03:25 pm IST

Published - August 03, 2023 11:53 am IST - KARUR

The ED officials were accompanied by CRPF personnel during their searches in Karur on August 3, 2023

The ED officials were accompanied by CRPF personnel during their searches in Karur on August 3, 2023 | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Officials of the Directorate of Enforcement (ED) on Thursday, August 3, 2023 began searches in Karur, at the premises of the personal assistant of arrested T.N. Minister V. Senthilbalaji, as well as at other premises of the Minister’s acquaintances. Mr. Senthilbalaji is presently under judicial custody, at the Puzhal Prison in Chennai, after he was arrested by the ED in a money laundering case on June 14.

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According to sources, the searches are taking place in at least five places in Karur. The residence of Sankar, personal assistant to the Minister, on Coimbatore Road; a finance company in Sengunthapuram and a granite firm in Chinna Andankoil are among the places where searches are being carried out.

ED officials, who arrived in Karur from Chennai and other places, were accompanied by Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel, and began the simultaneous searches around 8.30 a.m. They did not allow those inside the premises to leave.

Thursday’s searches come a day after the ED conducted searches at the premises of a DMK functionary, who was a close associate of Mr Senthilbalaji, in Vedasandur in Dindigul district.

This is the second such search operation in Karur since the Minister’s arrest: Income Tax Department officials on July 11, 2023, resumed searches in Karur at the premises of acquaintances of Mr. Senthilbalaji,. The Minister’s arrest itself was preceded by 8-day long searches, also by Income Tax officials, at premises of persons close to Mr. Senthilbalaji and his brother V. Ashok Kumar.

Coimbatore searches

Sources said the ED teams also conducted searches in three locations in Coimbatore in connection with the same case. The searches were underway at the residence of Tasmac Supervisor Muthubalan on Maniam Subramaniam Street; properties linked to a private construction firm Arun & Associates in Nadar Colony and the founder of the firm Arun Prasad Prakashan’s house in Sivaram Nagar — all in the Ramanathapuram area of Coimbatore city.

Five officials, who arrived at the premises in two cars bearing Kerala registration number plates, conducted the search, with Rapid Action Force (RAF) personnel protection, sources said. 

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