The sprawling Kodanad Estate in the picturesque hills of The Nilgiris, which served as the summer-cum-health retreat of former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa, is one of the properties belonging to her jailed aide VK Sasikala and the latter’s relatives, to be attached by the Income Tax department.
On Wednesday, the I-T dept issued an order “provisionally attaching” various properties belonging to Sasikala, her sister-in-law Ilavarasi and nephew VN Sudhakaran, both co-convicts with her in the Bengaluru prison in the disproportionate assets case.
According to an I-T official, the action was initiated under the provisions of the Benami Transactions (Provisions) Act. Recently, the department had attached other properties of Sasikala and her relatives, including a posh bungalow under construction in Poes Garden, a few yards away from Jayalalithaa’s imposing Veda Nilayam bungalow.
The properties’ estimated worth is nearly Rs2,000 crore.
“Of the properties provisionally attached are the Kodandu Estate, set in the midst of tea estates, and the bungalow in Siruthavur near Chennai. We have issued notices to Sasikala and the other two accused in the case,” an official said. The attachment orders were pasted on the properties as well.
Most properties were acquired during 1991-96, when Jayalalithaa was the CM for the first term drawing a token salary of Re1 per month, in the name of what are suspected to be shell companies with no entries of other business transactions, he said.