Andhra CID names Naidu’s son Lokesh as accused in inner ring road scam | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Andhra CID names Naidu’s son Lokesh as accused in inner ring road scam

By, Hyderabad
Sep 27, 2023 08:32 AM IST

Lokesh was named as accused No. 14 in a memo filed by the CID authorities in the special court for Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) cases at Vijayawada

The Crime Investigation Department (CID) of the Andhra Pradesh police on Tuesday included the name of Telugu Desam Party (TDP) general secretary Nara Lokesh, who is son of former chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, as one of the accused in a case pertaining to alleged irregularities in the designing of the inner ring road around the capital city of Amaravati, officials familiar with the matter said.

Nara Lokesh, son of former chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, was named by the CID as one of the accused in a case pertaining to alleged irregularities in the designing of the inner ring road around the capital city of Amaravati, (PTI)
Nara Lokesh, son of former chief minister Chandrababu Naidu, was named by the CID as one of the accused in a case pertaining to alleged irregularities in the designing of the inner ring road around the capital city of Amaravati, (PTI)

Lokesh was named as accused No. 14 in a memo filed by the CID authorities in the special court for Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) cases at Vijayawada. The court will take up the hearing of the case next week.

According to the memo, contents of which were reviewed by the HT, Heritage Foods Ltd of which Lokesh was a non-executive director between 2013 and 2017, had purchased about 10.4 acres of land at Kantheru village of Guntur district between June and September 2014.

The Heritage Foods also purchased another 4.55 acres from the companies belonging to industrialists Lingamaneni Ramesh and Lingamaneni Rajashekar. Both the land parcels were adjacent to each other.

“The initial design of inner ring road of Amaravati was changed so that it would pass adjacent to the lands of Lingamaneni and Heritage Foods towards Kaza and Kantheru villages,” the CID said, alleging that it was done to enhance the value of these lands.

The investigating agency alleged that Lokesh, who was one of the board members of Heritage Foods, had coordinated the purchase of lands by the company from Lingamanenis, in collusion with his father Chandrababu Naidu, who was then the chief minister. In return, Lingamaneni Ramesh had allocated his palatial bungalow to Naidu in a quid pro quo deal, the CID said.

On May 10, 2022, the CID filed a criminal case against Naidu and 12 others including former minister P Narayana, Lingamaneni Ramesh and Heritage Foods Ltd, in connection with the alleged irregularities in designing of the inner ring road around Amaravati.

The case was registered acting on a complaint lodged by YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) leader and Mangalagiri MLA Alla Ramakrishna Reddy on April 27 and submission of a preliminary inquiry report by the revenue authorities on May 9.

The CID registered a criminal case against Naidu and 12 others, under various sections of the Indian Penal Code including Section 120 (b) (criminal conspiracy) and 420 (cheating). Naidu was named accused no. 1 (A-1) in the case.

Reacting to the development, Lokesh told reporters in New Delhi that he had no connection whatsoever with the alignment of the Amaravati inner ring road. “Yet, they included by name. I will fight it out; and when the TDP comes to power, I will give a return gift to all these people,” he said.

In a related development, the state high court on Tuesday heard the arguments on a petition filed by Naidu seeking anticipatory bail in the Amaravati inner ring road case. On behalf of the TDP chief, senior Supreme Court advocate Siddharth Luthra presented his arguments.

Advocate general Sriram Subrahmanyam, who argued the case on behalf of the CID, opposed the bail petition of Naidu. The hearings will continue on Wednesday.

SKILL DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION CASE

Meanwhile, the ACB court deferred the hearing to Wednesday on the bail petition of Naidu in the multi-crore skill development corporation case, as the regular judge was on leave on Tuesday. It also deferred the petition of the CID seeking additional custody of Naidu for questioning in the case.

At the same time, the state high court on Tuesday completed the hearing on the bail petition filed by Naidu in a case related to violence during his public rally at Angallu village in Annamayya district on August 4, in which some YSRCP workers and a few policemen were injured.

After hearing the arguments of Naidu’s counsel Posani Venkateshwarlu and the CID counsel Ponnavolu Sudhakar Reddy, the high court reserved the judgement. Naidu was named as Accused No. 1 in the case and was charged with attempt to murder.

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