Red sanders smuggler Guddeti Ramanath Reddy, alias Vinjamur Ramanath Reddy, who surrendered following a manhunt launched by the Nellore police, has active links with international gangsters, including Dubai-based Sahul Hameed, alias Sahul Bhai.
Because of risk from rival gangsters and police surveillance, Ramanath Reddy was stated to have made the Vinjamur area his shelter zone for a considerable time, but continued with his illegal activities.
The police placed strict surveillance on his movements after he went absconding even as four of his followers were arrested and Rs. 44.5 lakh seized in the Atmakur area on April 12.
Sources said that Ramanath Reddy could not find hideouts in Chennai and Bengaluru. He had a running feud with a Madurai-based red wood coolie supplier Raj Mohan in Tamil Nadu.
Once Sahul Bhai’s close followers, Ramanath Reddy and Raj Mohan turned enemies and even tried killing each other.
With the government taking a hard line against red wood smuggling, Ramanath Reddy started reorganising his activities, but he received a setback with the arrest of his followers.
SP Vishal Gunni formed special teams and mounted surveillance on Ramanath Reddy’s activities, which eventually led to his surrender to the Atmakur police on Wednesday.
During investigation, it was found that Ramanath Reddy had close association with several areas in Nellore as he had been visiting his relatives in Vinjamur since childhood. He married a girl here and almost settled down for continuing his activities.
When the police investigated into the origin of his smuggling activities, it became known that Ramanath Reddy was successful as a skilled carpenter in Badvel. His native place is Chappadu in Kadapa district.
Slowly, he moved to Chennai, where he did well as a carpenter. It was there he extended his services to Sahul Bhai, who was in Chennai at that time. Sahul made him his agent in Badvel, Rapur, Udayagiri, and Siddanur areas, which later saw him grow as a second-rung smuggler on a par with Kallam Gangi Reddy.
Apart from Gangi Reddy’s gang, Ramanath Reddy had active links with other smugglers like Venkat Reddy, Nazeer Ahmad Roshan, and Izaz of Bengaluru. He also had an understanding with the red wood gangs in Nellore district.
Arrest of his followers recently was a huge setback for Ramanath Reddy