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‘SENTHIL BALAJI LIABLE FOR TNSTC CRISES’

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Trichy: Brushing aside allegations of irregularity in purchase buses for the transport corporation, transport minister M R Vijayabhaskar said that former transport minister Senthil Balalji was responsible for the financial crises in the transport corporation.

He added that DMK president MK Stalin was levelling allegations out of frustration for failing to topple the AIADMK government in the state. “People in the opposition were expecting the AIADMK to fall,” said the transport minister.

“When Senthil Balaji was transport minister, MK Stalin had accused him of indulging in corruption in procuring electronic ticketing machines for the transport department. Infact, DMK’s Rajya Sabha MP K Kanimozhi too had alleged the same during the Aravakurichi by-poll. Has Senthil Balaji become non-corrupt as he has been inducted into the DMK,” questioned Vijayabhaskar.

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Speaking to reporters in Karur on Sunday, Vijayabhaskar said that the tenders were processed by a team of seven senior officials and hence there is no question of purchasing the buses at an inflated price. The tender was floated for 2,000 buses under the Tamil Nadu Transparency in Tenders act – 1998, which was introduced by DMK.

He said due procedure has been followed in procuring buses for Rs 600 crore from Ashok Leyland. “It is the same company from whom 15,000 buses were procured during DMK’s rule,” said Vijayabhaskar.

He also said that a 1,000 buses have been purchased and an order for 500 more will be made next week. Besides, he has also sought permission of the chief minister to procure of another 3,000 buses.

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