‘Top TN leaders have pending criminal cases’

CHENNAI, February 11 (Agencies): Over 26 sitting MLAs, including Chief Minister M Karunanidhi, Deputy Chief Minister M K Stalin and Leader of Opposition J Jayalalithaa, have serious criminal cases pending against them, as per their affidavits, according to a report released by the Association of Democratic Reforms and National Election Watch here on Thursday.
Addressing a press conference, Anil Bairwal, the national coordinator of the organisation, said as per affidavits filed during the 2006 Assembly elections, the CM had nine cases pending against him of which two related to deliberate and malicious acts intending to outrage religious feelings, while Jayalalithaa had three pending cases of which two were registered under the Prevention of Corruption Act. Deputy Chief Minister M K Stalin had eight cases pending against him, including charges relating to sedition and attempt to murder. The report was released in the wake of Assembly elections scheduled to be held later this year.
Of the 76 MLAs in the Assembly who had cases pending against them, 39 were from the DMK, 15 from the PMK and seven belonged to the AIADMK, the report stated. Coordinator of Tamil Nadu Election Watch Sudarshan Padmanabhan said of the affidavits of 30 ministers filed in 2006, 16 had pending criminal cases. Interestingly, the Chief Minister and the Opposition leader topped the list of crorepati MLAs. While the Chief M inister had a fortune of Rs 26 crore, Jayalalithaa had declared assets worth Rs 24 crore. Surprisingly, seven MLAs have not declared their PAN card details.
Interestingly, Karunanidhi had on December 1 last year claimed that he had a bank balance of Rs 35.9 lakh and fixed deposits of Rs 5.65 crore. He made the statement in response to Jayalalithaa’s comments on his wealth. The DMK also outscored AIADMK in the crore-club with 33% of its MLAs featuring in it, while AIADMK had only 14% of its MLAs in that league.