Tamil Nadu Finance Minister Palanivel Thiaga Rajan on Wednesday claimed that a viral audio clip in which he is purportedly heard criticising the ruling Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and praising the Bharatiya Janata Party was fake.

This was the second such audio clip that was shared on social media that the minister termed as fabricated.

In the first clip that surfaced on April 19, Rajan can purportedly be heard saying that DMK President and Chief Minister MK Stalin’s son Udhayanidhi Stalin and son-in-law V Sabareesan have amassed large amounts of ill-gotten wealth in a year, reported The Print. In the second clip shared by BJP’s state unit chief K Annamalai on Tuesday, Rajan is allegedly heard criticising the functioning of the DMK and praising the BJP for its “one person, one post” structure.

Rajan claimed that the first audio clip was fabricated in a statement on April 22.

In his statement about the second audio clip on Wednesday, the minister again claimed that the content was fake and described it as the handiwork of a blackmail gang wanting to achieve its political ambitions.

In his latest statement, Rajan shared three deepfake videos – of BJP leader Manoj Tiwari and former US Presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump – to show such content can be made easily.

“If such authentic-looking videos can be machine-generated, imagine what all can be done with audio files,” he said.

Refuting the allegations that he made comments about DMK, Rajan praised MK Stalin, as well as his son and son-in-law.

“To achieve the lofty goals of the Dravidian model of governance, we have brought in major financial reforms and we have achieved within two years what has not been attempted in the past decade,” he said. “These results are also superior to what the Union government has achieved in the last decade.”

Praising Udhayanidhi Stalin, the state sports minister, Rajan said that he is the “hope for the next generation”. The finance minister also said that he was the leading figure in raising voices for promoting Udhayanidhi Stalin to the state Cabinet.

“Why would I ever say anything negative about any of them?” he asked. “From my first day in my public life, Sabareesan has always been my most trusted advisor, guide and pillar of support.”

He added: “Such cowardly attempts [to malign his image] will never succeed. From the inception of the DMK, all of us have lived together as one movement, one party and one extended family and we will always continue to do so.”