Andhra Pradesh

CID submits counters to HC in Amravati assigned lands scam

A view of the Andhra Pradesh High Court building.   | Photo Credit: V. Raju

More skeletons continue to tumble out of the closet of the maze of Capital lands scam. Fresh investigations by the Crime Investigation Department has reportedly revealed a deep rooted nexus between politicians and certain bureaucrats in bringing in G.O Ms 41 (The Andhra Pradesh Capital City Land Pooling Scheme), amending rules to allot developed plots to those in possession of assigned lands.

In a counter-affidavit submitted to the High Court of Andhra Pradesh, which had stayed all proceedings in the case filed by Mangalagiri MLA Alla Ramakrishna Reddy against former Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu and former Minister for Municipal Administration P. Narayana, the CID submitted crucial evidences and urged the court to lift the stay and help in further investigations.

“The whole scam centred on a web of lies and deceit. A campaign was run over claims made by some political sections and government agencies that the assigned lands would be taken over by the government creating a sense of fear and panic in the assignees, most of them belonging to Dalit communities. The assigned lands were then bought at throwaway prices and later submitted to a land pooling scheme. In return, they were provided with developed plots after bringing in G.O Ms No 41 in February 2016 in violation of all existing rules. The issuance of the GO has caused massive loss to the State exchequer and in violation of business rules,’’ said the CID DSP Lakshminarayana in a counter affidavit submitted in the High Court.

The CID further said that the GO had neither prior Cabinet approval nor passed by the Legislative Assembly, mandatory according to the APCRDA Act.

Stating that the agency had established the criminal conspiracy by the then Chief Minister and the then Municipal Administration Minister in issuing the GO, the CID said that further investigation would bring all the facts into light.

The CID said that it had obtained details of land owners who had given lands in categories 4,5,6 from the CRDA and mapped the details on the ground. Most of the persons who had given lands in Category 4 belonged to the Telugu Desam Party and have tried in vain to register the lands in sub registrar office at Mangalagiri. These persons have purchased lands from the assignees on registered sale agreements by paying nominal amounts, later gave their lands to LPS and some of them even sold the developed plots at exorbitant rates.

In yet another startling evidence, the CID had said that then Joint Collector of Guntur Ch. Sreedhar had issued oral instructions to the Tahsildar, Thullur, to hand over all the RSR, FMB, Adangals, 1 B original land records to the office of JC. The CID recorded the statement of then Tahsildar Tirupathi Venkateswarlu, who served as Thullur Tahsildar during September-November , 2014. He was succeeded by Anne Sudhir.

The whole conspiracy came into light when the office of Collector, Guntur, wrote to Tahsildars of the three mandals of Thullur, Tadepalli and Mangalagiri to say that there were no revenue records available and asked them to do a field survey and find out who were in possession of assigned lands. “The nature of the scam is so clear as the then JC had asked the Tahsildars to take possession of all revenue records and keep them in his room, and later in 2016, the office or collector wrote a letter seeking records. It is evident that only Dr. Sreedhar (the then JC, Guntur) knew where the original land records were and he had not submitted the records neither to his successor nor to the Collector. The CID had already filed cases against Mr. Sudheer and Mr. Brahmananda Reddy and further investigations would bring all facts into light,” said the CID.

The investigative agency had further cited a judgment of Supreme Court ruling out interference by courts in cases under 482 Cr.P.C. and vesting all authority with the police to investigate in cognizable offences and appeared to the High Court to lift the stay and allow it to continue the investigations.


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Printable version | Jun 24, 2021 3:03:02 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/cid-submits-counters-to-hc-in-capital-assigned-lands-scam/article34530917.ece

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