Tamil Nadu Health Minister Dr C Vijaya Baskar is one of the main culprits involved in bribing voters in RK Nagar constituency, said the Election Commission on Sunday, said quoting the Income Tax department. The poll panel has called off the by-elections in the constituency after allegations arose that parties were bribing the electorate for votes.

The Election Commission said that during the I-T raids conducted at senior All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader Baskar’s premises on April 7, “incriminating documents were found in the form of overall money distribution chart” totalling to Rs 89 crores. “Loose sheets were found with his [Baskar’s] accountant Srinivasan indicating distribution of Rs 89 crores to a number of politicians for further distribution among the voters,” the Election Commission said citing I-T reports.

Moreover, documents showing the voters list with the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam and the AIADMK’s names marked against their names were seized during the raids, the poll panel added. “The above mentioned search and seizure action by the Income Tax authorities has resulted in unraveling a huge and systematic design to distribute money to voters in order to induce or bribe them to influence their voting behavior,” the statement read.

However, Sasikala’s nephew TTV Dinakaran has denied the I-T Department’s findings. Dinakaran was the faction’s candidate from RK Nagar. “Nobody has paid money even without my knowledge. These documents are all forged,” he said, adding that the I-T department’s searches during by-poll time are “unheard of” and have been done solely to target ministers in the Sasikala camp. Dinakaran also claimed “nothing” was found at Baskar’s residence.

Meanwhile, former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram took a jibe at the Centre and its move last year to ban high-denomination currency notes in a bid to tackle black money. “We were told demonetisation has put an end to black money. Was money distributed in RK Nagar white money?” he tweeted.

On Saturday, the Central Board of Direct Taxes had submitted its report to the EC in Delhi, alleging that the VK Sasikala camp of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam had kept aside nearly Rs 90 crore to be distributed among voters to gain support for their candidate Dinakaran. In its reports, the I-T Department had named seven senior AIADMK leaders, including Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi Palaniswami, Forest Minister Dindigul Sreenivasan and Finance Minister Jayakumar.