The Madras High Court today declined to entertain an impleading petition by DMK leader M K Stalin seeking a probe by the DRI and the CBI into the alleged payoffs to ruling AIADMK MLAs ahead of the February 18 trust vote by the K Palaniswami government. A first bench comprising Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice Bhavani Subbaroyan, while declining to entertain the plea, said the original writ petition by the DMK Working President challenging the trust vote holding that it was conducted by contravening rules of Assembly, will be heard on July 11. The bench, which went through the affidavit and submissions by the counsel for DRI that it could take up probe only into matters of smuggling and related matters and not regarding payoffs to the MLAs, said that it cannot allow the DRI and CBI to implead as respondents to the petition.
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Making a special mention in the court, counsel for Stalin, R Shanmugasundaram, had on June 13 referred to reports in a section of media about the alleged payoffs of crores of rupees to some MLAs for their support to the trust vote. He had stated then that they would like to file the miscellaneous petition seeking a CBI and DRI inquiry into the alleged payoffs as such a probe was very much needed. On February 18, Palaniswami had won the trust vote with a 122-11 margin in the 234-member Assembly aided by the eviction of main opposition DMK and walkout by its allies, amid stormy scenes during which mikes were uprooted, chairs toppled and sheets of papers torn.