Former Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on Monday asked if Rs 100 crore distributed in cash to voters in R.K. Nagar of Chennai was black or white after the Election Commission indefinitely postponed the April 12 by-election to the assembly constituency following allegations that the ruling AIADMK had bribed electors in violation of the code of conduct.
The Congress leader also criticised the central government questioning if demonetisation had indeed put an end to black money in India.
"We were told demonetisation has put an end to black money. Was money distributed in R.K. Nagar white money," Chidambaram asked in a tweet.
The poll panel in a late Sunday night order said the voting would now be conducted "when the vitiating effect created by the distribution of money and gift items to lure the electors gets removed with the passage of time, and the atmosphere in the constituency becomes conducive to the holding of free and fair election".
The move came a day after the Income Tax Department said around Rs 100 crore had been distributed to voters by the AIADMK faction led by the now jailed V.K. Sasikala.
On Friday, I-T officials raided the residences and business premises of Tamil Nadu Health Minister C. Vijayabaskar, his relatives as well as persons close to him and his business associates.
According to the documents seized by the I-T officials during their raids, and published by some media, the price of one vote in the constituency was Rs 4,000.