Cash-for-bail scam outgrows mining

The cash-for-bail scam has grown bigger than the original mining scam case. The Anti-Corruption Bureau sleuths are likely to file a prisoner transit warrant against mining baron Gali Janardhan Reddy. The ACB will also file a preliminary chargesheet by August 15 in the mandatory period of 60 days sources said. In the Obulapuram mining scam case, only four persons were arrested, including Gali Janardhan Reddy, his brother-in-law B. Srinivas Reddy, IAS official Y. Srilakshmi, former mining official V.D. Rajagopal. Of the three other accused one is OMC company, the other is mines official Linga Reddy who is no more and Gali’s personal assistant Ali who surrendered in a Karnataka court.

In two cases of cash-for-bail scam, the number of those arrested has touched 11, wherein two MLAs, three sitting judges and a retired judge have been arrested. MLAs Gali Somasekhar Reddy, T.H. Suresh, history-sheeter Yadagiri Rao, retired judge Chalapathi Rao, suspended CBI special judge T. Pattabhi Rama Rao, his son Ravichandra, Gali’s relative Dasrath Ram Reddy, advocate Aditya, judges Narasimha Rao, D. Prabhakar Rao and realtor R. Surya Prakash are in judicial custody.

On June 17, the first arrests in the cash-for-bail scam were made of Ravichandra and Chalapathi Rao. ACB sources said that as Gali Janardhan Reddy is the beneficiary, his brother Somasekhar Reddy, who met him in jail and conspired with him, will also be made accused in the case. “We may file a PT warrant and have him arrested in the case,” said an investigator.

As for Karnataka MLA Sriramulu’s involvement in the scam, the ACB hasn’t found any evidence so far. Sriramulu had only asked Gali’s relatives to try for bail by bribing but there is no evidence to show that he was part of the conspiracy. Investigations have also revealed that in the cash-for-bail scam the accused gold merchants bought Rs 3 crore worth of gold to the city to avoid police vigil during bypolls. The ACB also suspects that the balance cash was brought in through hawala transactions.

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