Vijayawada: The ACB is keen on catching corrupt officers in important positions, which has led to a serious discussion in the police department. Two mid-level officers who previously worked at the Guntur range were reportedly responsible for tipping off the ACB, which led to a raid on Ongole PTC DSP Durgaprasad’s house on Wednesday. The officers were involved in a dispute with Durgaprasad.
The DSP is notorious for arranging private settlements in the Guntur rural and Budampadu areas; but fearing his political affiliations, nobody has dared lodge a complaint against him to date. It is learnt that two SPs were also involved in the issue.
The officials of the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) made sure that they had done their homework before conducting the raids on the houses of Durgaprasad and his relatives. “Guntur range is a high-risk zone for officers in any department. They are lured into traps find themselves caught in corruption cases related to land settlements. Durgap-rasad’s case is no different,” a retired DSP said.
Last month, the ACB unearthed disproportionate assets worth at least Rs 4 crore belonging to the deputy executive engineer of the Roads and Buildings Department, Subhash Chandra Patro, in Visakhapatnam. Recently, a raid has also been conducted on Muni Venkata Ramana, Joint Director of the Depart-ment of Employment and Training, indicating that the ACB is targeting highly placed officials. ACB DG R.P. Thakur is aiming for big fish only, an IPS officer commented, on condition of anonymity.
Speaking to this newspaper, Mr Thakur said that investors and NRIs should not be under the impression that development would be stalled in AP owing to rampant corruption. “We want to send a message that AP is a corruption-free state,” he said.The raid on Durga-prasad has sent a clear message to other errant officials in the Police Department, that they will not be spared. However, a SP in North Coastal Andhra and a DSP in South Coastal District who had been arrested on charges of corruption, were later acquitted and released for reasons unknown. They even went on to be promoted to the positions of DIG and additional SP respectively.
Ownership of 24 plots found
ACB officials found gold, ownership papers for 24 plots of land and a ship during a search of the home of deputy superintendent of police D. Durga Prasad, administrative officer at the Police Training College in Ongole.
ACB director-general R.P. Thakur said Durga Prasad has been arrested and a case of disproportionate assets has been registered against him. He said searches were conducted at the home of Prasad and 14 other places in Guntur, Chirala, in Prakasam district and Hyderabad.
Durga Prasad started his police career on September 19, 1991, as a sub-inspector. When he was circle inspector at Pattabhipuram police station in Guntur, he was suspended for getting involved in a civil dispute in November 2013. After the suspension was revoked, he was promoted as DSP in 2014.
ACB officials found ownership documents for open plots at Nallapadu and at Kothapeta village, Vetapalem mandal, Chirala, Prakasam district, and a 1.47 acre plot of land at Budampadu in Guntur district.
There were six other plots in the name of Mr Prasad’s benami Savaram Ramesh, in Narkodur, Karalapalem, Budampadu and Komali village in Guntur district and a commercial shop in Vijayashanthi Nagar in Guntur city.
The ACB said there was also a house in the name of his mother-in-law E. Usha Rani at Kankaragunta in Guntur. Two flats, six open plots and one parcel of land were in the name of another benami, T Subba Rao. The flats were in Pedapalakalur and Vijayapuri Colony in Guntur. Four open plots in Nallapadu and Gorantla and 0.93 acres of land at Perecherla were also in the name of Subba Rao.
Two motorcycles, a car, gold ornaments weighing 769 grams, silver ornaments weighing three kilos, four LIC policies and `49,000 in cash were also found....