Nimmagadda Prasad tells the Principal Special Court for CBI Cases in support of his petition seeking bail

Industrialist Nimmagadda Prasad, an accused in the disproportionate assets case against Kadapa MP Jaganmohan Reddy, informed a special court here on Tuesday that over 70 per cent of his investments in the Jagan group companies were made either before Vanpic project was taken up or after the death of then Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy.

Thus, there was no nexus between his investments in Jagan companies and the benefits and concessions received by him or his companies as quid pro quo arrangement as being made out the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Mr. Prasad told the Principal Special Court for CBI Cases in support of his petition seeking bail on Tuesday.

Arguing on behalf of Mr. Prasad his counsel, E. Umamaheshwar Rao, stated that the prosecution had got its facts wrong on many aspects of the case and the reasons cited opposing the bail petition had flimsy grounds based on suspicion. Nowhere in its charge-sheets filed so far the CBI had mentioned YSR as an accused but named him a conspirator along with Mr. Jagan and Prasad in the FIR.

There was no conspiracy as is being made out by the CBI, if YSR was not an accused and if there was no conspiracy there is no case, the defence counsel argued.

Mr. Umamaheshwar Rao informed the court that Mr. Prasad had disposed of his stake in Bharati Cements after it was taken over by a French company, had made handsome capital gains and paid Rs. 62 crore tax on returns. How could the prosecution term the investment as bribe when Mr. Prasad was able to take it back with profit, he sought to know.

He sought to set the record straight by stating that the prosecution had put Mr. Prasad’s investments in Bharati Cements at Rs. 240 crore but it was Rs. 285 crore, indeed. The investment was made in phases between January 2007, when Vanpic project was non-existent, and November 2009, after the death of YSR, he explained.

The CBI had termed V. Vijay Sai Reddy, the second accused in the case, as kingpin in the case and mastermind of the conspiracy but he was granted bail by the court and it had withstood scrutiny of the High Court, the defence counsel mentioned. When the kingpin could get bail, it could be granted to Mr. Prasad too, he argued. The judge posted the next hearing on the petition to July 19.