Reports also stated that undisclosed assets worth about Rs 5 crore were recovered during the raids.

I-T raid on at TN Chief Secy ends Rs 30 lakh in new notes recovered from relatives
news News Thursday, December 22, 2016 - 09:05

Income Tax (IT) officials on Thursday ended their raid at the house of Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary P Rama Mohana Rao.

The raids began on Wednesday morning and continued all night.

According to reports, the residence of his son Vivek in Chennai, and the latter’s in-laws’ house in Chittoor in Andhra Pradesh were also raided.

The Indian Express reported that Rs 30 lakh in new Rs 2,000 notes, five kilograms of gold and documents with details of undisclosed assets worth about Rs 5 crore were recovered during the raids carried out at 11 places, according to tax officials.

On Wednesday, searches were also conducted in Rao's office in the state secretariat. 

Ironically, Rao holds the additional charge of Vigilance Commissioner and the Commissioner for Administrative Reforms.

Rao was appointed to the post overlooking the seniority of several IAS officials.

Meanwhile, Union Minister Nirmala Sitharaman told reporters in Madurai that the IT raid on the Chief Secretary was "not an act of vengeance" and said IT raids can be conducted at any time based on a source of information. 

Informed sources said the searches of Rao's residence and office were linked to the earlier IT raids on the residence of businessmen J Shekhar Reddy, Srinivasalu and Prem.

On December 8, Income Tax officials seized Rs 90 crore worth of cash and 100 kg of gold bars in multiple raids in Chennai.

Out of the Rs 90 crore that was seized by the I-T sleuths, Rs 80 crore was in discontinued old Rs 500 and Rs 1000 currency notes, while Rs 10 crore was recently introduced Rs 2000 notes.

The Income Tax department later declared the seizure to be of a whopping 177 kg gold and Rs 130 crore, of which Rs 34 crore was in new denomination currency.

Shekar Reddy is believed to have been closely linked to senior bureaucrats in Tamil Nadu and TN CM O Panneerselvam.

A contractor, Reddy had reportedly executed a lot of work for the Tamil Nadu government. The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested all three on Wednesday.

Meanwhile, leaders of the DMK and PMK demanded the immediate dismissal of Rao.

Former IAS officer Devasahayam told IANS: "The raids have opened a Pandora's box. Corruption cannot happen in the government without the connivance of corrupt bureaucrats." 

He also found fault with the central government.

"Rao superceded several senior IAS officers when he was appointed the Chief Secretary. Even today there are 18 IAS officers senior to him working in the state or in the central government," Devasahayam said.

The IAS cadre comes under the central government, which was silent when Rao became the Chief Secretary.

"The raid on Rao's residence is a great, great shame for the IAS cadre," Devasahayam said.

IANS inputs