The Income Tax department on Thursday conducted searches at over 20 properties linked to Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam MP S Jagathrakshakan in Chennai, reported PTI.

Among the places that were searched were the Balaji and Rela hospitals in the city’s Chrompet area. Both the hospitals are reportedly owned by Jagathrakshakan.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin said the Bharatiya Janata Party government’s “vindictive politics” knew no bounds.

“Arresting AAP MP Sanjay Singh and raiding DMK MP Jagathrakshakan’s home are clear examples of their misuse of independent investigating agencies for political ends against INDIA bloc leaders,” the DMK chief added in a tweet. “This deliberate persecution of opposition leaders is an assault on democracy.”

On Wednesday, the Enforcement Directorate arrested Aam Aadmi Party’s MP Sanjay Singh in the Delhi liquor policy case.

“The BJP conveniently forgets that the Supreme Court has just warned the ED to be transparent and fair,” Stalin said. “But it seems they are hell-bent on disregarding the rule of law and democracy.”

On Tuesday, the court had said that the central agency has to provide a written copy stating the grounds of arrest to the accused person.

DMK leader TKS Elangovan alleged that the Centre wants to terrorise Opposition parties through central agencies, ANI reported.

“They are misusing all their powers,” he said. “They are not fit to rule a country as per law. BJP is a barbaric class of people who do not respect the Constitution or any law – who will do anything for their benefits.”

Other raids by central agencies

Central agencies raided a number of Opposition politicians in other states on Thursday.

The Income Tax department conducted searches at multiple locations in Telangana linked to Bharat Rashtra Samithi MLA Maganti Gopinath, India Today reported.

The Enforcement Directorate raided at least 13 locations linked to Trinamool Congress leader Rathin Ghosh in connection with an investigation into alleged irregularities in the recruitments by West Bengal civic bodies, PTI reported, quoting unidentified officials. Ghosh is the state’s food and supplies minister.

The Enforcement Directorate has alleged that about 1,500 people were recruited by different civic bodies in the state illegally between 2014 and 2018 against monetary considerations.

The central agency also raided several properties in Karnataka linked to Congress leader RM Manjunath Gowda, The Indian Express reported. The raids were in connection with an inquiry into an alleged scam at the Shivamogga District Cooperative Central Bank. Gowda was elected the bank’s chairperson for the sixth time last week.

In 2014, when Gowda was the bank’s chairperson, he was arrested for allegedly disbursing loans against fake gold. An investigation had reportedly revealed that the loss incurred by the bank amounted to Rs 68 crore.