Raja becomes the second minister of the previous DMK regime to be taken into custody in the continuing crackdown by the AIADMK government on land grabbing, the first being Veerapandi Arumugam who was arrested on July 30.
Raja, former Handloom Minister, Erode Municipal Corporation Mayor K Kumar Muruges, party's District Deputy Secretary O.C. Viswanathan, his son Rajendran and one Subramaniam were arrested by the Special Police for Land Grabbing Cell, at 5 a.m., police said.
They were taken into custody following a complaint from one Ramasamy a few days ago that Raja and 11 others, including Muruges and Viswanathan, had visited his house in 2007 and forcibly obtained his signature to sell 60.5 acres of his land at Thendralnagar in Perundurai for the amount he had borrowed from Subramaniam, police said.
He had complained that no money was paid to him, police said. Cases have been registered against Raja and 11 others under various IPC sections including 420 (cheating).
Police said Raja was arrested from his house at Kavindapady near here and the other four at their respective houses in Erode and Perundurai. Police are on the lookout for six others.
They were taken to the Erode Land Grabbing police cell located in the district police office, where Raja told police that he was innocent, and wanted them to show him the complainant but the police said he would appear in court when the trial begins.
"False cases have been foisted against me," Raja said.