Using public transport to move money to ‘buy votes’

Ready to serve: A view of the Pandit Nehru Bus Station in Vijayawada. V. RAJU

Ready to serve: A view of the Pandit Nehru Bus Station in Vijayawada. V. RAJU   | Photo Credit: V. RAJU

Politicians adopting different strategies for shifting cash

Taking a different tack from the usual way of using private vehicles for transporting money, close aides of several politicians in the Telugu States are using public transport to move large amount of cash .

The instance of Cyberabad police seizing ₹2 crore from two persons trying to transport cash to Rajahmundry by train is a classic case of how people close to candidates are using public transport to move the huge amount of cash.

“Politicians are adopting different strategies for moving money to avoid police check-posts and use of public transport is one of them,” said a senior police official.

The unaccounted cash of ₹ 2 crore seized from two employees of a construction firm on Wednesday night belongs to Telugu Desam Party MP M. Muralimohan, confirms Cyberabad Police Commissioner V.C. Sajjanar.

He said that the cash, which was being transported by the employees of Jayabheri Properties was meant for ‘distribution’ in Rajahmundry, from where Mr Muralimohan’s daughter-in-law Maganti Roopa is contesting as LS candidate.

The two were identified as Nimmaluri Srihari (44) and Aruthi Pandari (39), who work for Jayabheri group owned by the actor-turned-politician Muralimohan, who was also made accused in the case relating to election offence.

The two accused who were detained by the Special Operations Team at the Hitech City railway station, told the police that the cash was being taken to Rajahmundry for distribution to voters ahead of the Lok Sabha election. The two arrested were about to board a local train to Secunderabad railway station and from there they were to board the Garib Rath to Rajahmundry.

In another case, Hyderabad police seized ₹ 47. 75 lakh unaccounted money from three persons travelling in two luxury cars. 

The trio identified as M Krishna Reddy, K Sridhar Reddy and V Naresh Reddy are close aides and main ‘financiers’ of Malkajgiri Lok Sabha Congress candidate A Revanth Reddy, the police said.

The police have so far seized ₹ 18.49 crore in cash and about 22,419 litres of liquor. In all, 86,500 persons with criminal record and has the potential to create trouble during polls were bound over by the police, who also executed 3,855 non-bailable warrants (NBW). 

Meanwhile, in one of the biggest cash seizures in the State since the model code of conduct came into force, the Hyderabad police seized ₹ 3.29 crore from the residence of a jewellery shop owner in Banjara Hills.

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Printable version | May 25, 2020 4:32:08 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/using-public-transport-to-move-money-to-buy-votes/article26742068.ece

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