One sentenced in TTD dollar scam

The Fourth Additional District Magistrate court-cum-CBCID court here on Friday sentenced Venkatachalapathi, the then Bokkasam clerk in Tirumala temple to three years imprisonment, and imposed a fine of Rs. 10,000 in the infamous ‘dollars scam’ which took place in the temple in 2006.

Justice Yugandhar, pronounced the verdict on the nine-year-long case. In this case, P. Seshadri, popularly known as ‘Dollar’ Seshadri, who was also a Bokkasam clerk, was a prime witness in the case.

It may be noted here that on June 22, 2006 as many as 300 Srivari dollars, each weighing 5 grams, went missing mysteriously from the ‘Bokkasam’ (official strong room of Lord’s belongings). Then Mr. Seshadri, working as Bokkasam clerk, had handed over 1,500 gold dollars (of five grams each) to his colleague Venkatachalapati when the change of shift in duties came. Both had duly taken signatures of each other in the register regarding handing over of the dollars. Of the stock, 300 dollars, then valued at Rs. 15 lakh, went missing. The then deputy executive officer of TTD Reddivari Prabhakar Reddy had lodged a police complaint at Tirumala. Lack of progress and inordinate delay in investigation resulted in the case being handed over to the CBCID, led by the then DSP Venkateswara Rao.

Between 2008 and 2010, the CBCID intensified the probe, including sending of the Bokkasam register for ‘handwriting’ examination in Hyderabad. The signatures of the two officials were found to be correct. The investigating officials further conducted polygraph and brain mapping tests on Venkatachalapathi in Bangalore, in which he confessed to misappropriating 300 dollars, sold outside the temple. The CBCID submitted its report to the court in 2010.

Senior Public Prosecutor Pallepagu Srinath, who led the prosecution, told The Hindu that in all 34 witnesses were examined in the case. Seshadri has been working in Tirumala temple under extension as the Officer on Special Duty for the last nine years. He was superannuated in 2006.

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2022 4:10:02 PM |

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