NEW DELHI, June 17 (PTI): The BJP on Saturday slammed the Tamil Nadu government over the arrest of its Tamil Nadu leader S G Suryah, alleging that chief minister M K Stalin has taken “revenge” for the arrest of his electricity minister V Senthil Balaji by the Enforcement Directorate in a money laundering case.
Suryah was arrested by the police in Chennai late on Friday under sections of the IPC and the IT Act. Police sources said the action was based on a CPI(M) complaint against a social media post by the BJP state secretary.
Reacting to the arrest, BJP national spokesperson Tom Vaddakan told a press conference at the party headquarters here, “I call it a vendetta arrest. The chief minister has said in a statement after the arrest of Balaji that he will take revenge.”
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday arrested Balaji under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) in an alleged cash-for-jobs scam in the state transport department when he was the transport minister in the AIADMK government during 2011-15. He later joined the Stalin-led DMK.
Vaddakan said the action has been taken against Suryah for his tweet about the death of a sanitation worker in Tamil Nadu, while Balaji was arrested “for his involvement in cash-for-jobs scam”.
On the minister’s arrest, the BJP spokesperson said, “This is not the case that we brought about. It was a case in which chief minister Stalin himself wanted Balaji to be arrested for corruption when he was in the opposition.”
With Suryah’s arrest, a message has been sent out that “if you raise any issue, then Stalin will strike,” he charged.
Vaddakan alleged that the Tamil Nadu Police has arrested Suryah for his tweet in a retaliatory action because Stalin is “worried that Senthil will expose him”.
“Today, when Senthil is a minister in the DMK government, he has connection with the chief minister and a lot of expose is going to happen,” the BJP spokesperson claimed.
“That is why he (Stalin) rushed to the hospital to meet the minister (Senthil)…. He is worried that Senthil will expose him,” he alleged.
“And worried he should be because his acts of omissions and commissions that he has committed jointly will take him to the place where he deserves to be,” the BJP spokesperson said, adding, “this is a message to the Tamil Nadu chief minister that he should concentrate on governance”.