Cash-for-vote scam: Court asks cops to probe AP CM's alleged role

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | U SUDHAKAR REDDY
Published Aug 29, 2016, 8:27 pm IST
Updated Aug 29, 2016, 8:35 pm IST
Forensic labs have confirmed the recorded voice in the cash-for-vote conversations as being that of Naidu.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu (Photo: File)
 Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu (Photo: File)

Hyderabad: The cash-for-vote scam has come back to haunt Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, with Principal Special Judge for Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) cases on Monday ordering ‘concerned police’ to thoroughly investigate into the fresh complaint filed by YSR Congress MLA A Ramakrishna Reddy.

Forensic labs in Mumbai and London have confirmed the recorded voice in the conversations pertaining to cash-for-vote scandal as being that of Naidu. Based on this, the YSRCP MLA has filed a plea to make Naidu the key accused in the case, and investigate his role as abettor and perpetrator.

The Telangana State ACB on May 31, 2015 arrested Telugu Desam Party (TDP) MLA A Revanth Reddy and some others in Hyderabad in connection with the cash-for-vote scam. Reddy had allegedly tried to bribe an Anglo-Indian nominated MLA Elvis Stephenson of Rs 5 crore, for the Member of Legislative Council (MLC) elections to vote for a TDP candidate.

The Telangana ACB found audio and video conversations including that of AP CM Naidu talking to the MLA, allegedly to lure him to vote for TDP. Naidu’s telephonic conversation with Elvis starts with “Hello! Good evening brother, how are you? Manavallu briefed me...I am with you.. This is our commitment.. We will work together.”

Petitioner A Ramakrishna Reddy alleged,”It is evident that Naidu was party to the criminal conspiracy along with other accused, and abetted in getting Elvis to vote in favour of the TDP candidate. MLA Revanth was caught red handed with Rs 50 lakh while handing over it to the MLA Elvis. Investigation should be carried out against Naidu under the offences of Criminal Conspiracy and Prevention of Corruption Act”.

A test sample of Naidu’s voice was taken from his talk at the Davos meet and tallied with the audio recording. The ACB now has to submit its report before September 29.

Advocate for the complainant Ponnavolu Sudhakar Reddy said, ”After considering the 29-page complaint the judge has directed the agency to investigate the case under section 156 (3) of CrPC which provides powers to the magistrate to check the police performance and monitor it besides placing the persons named in the complaint as accused in the case”.

The complainant has also submitted an audiovisual recording of Chandrababu Naidu‘s interview transcript to the anchor of a national news channel where Naidu admitted that his phone had been tapped.

Location: India, Telangana, Hyderabad

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