Visakhapatnam: Anti Corruption Bureau officials on Wednesday nabbed B.T.V. Rama Rao a “millionaire tahsildar” in Vizag city where they found Rs 41 lakh in new currency notes, 1 kg gold, keys to four locker, and properties with document value of Rs 3.5 crore.
However, the market value of these properties is estimated to be between Rs 40 crore to Rs 50 crore. ACB sources said that Rama Rao did not appear to have wasted any chance to make money in illegally ways.
Accepting huge bribes for doing official favours such as issuing pattadar passbooks to genuine owners of land or fabricating details on the government website was the norm with him, the sources said.
Incidentally, while the ACB raid was on at Rama Rao’s house Akkayyapalem in the city, a woman reached there with Rs 35,000 in bribe money to get her pattadar passbook.
ACB DSP (Visakha Urban) K. Ramakrishna Prasad said that the tahsildar also maintained a full-fledged office in the basement of his house at Akkayyapalem for illegal operations. The ACB also found over 220 pattadar passbooks in his office that were yet to be disbursed.
Rama Rao, a native of Ravikamatam area in Vizag district, has joined the revenue department as steno in 1986 and was elevated to the post of deputy tahsildar in 2011 and promoted as tahsildar in 2015. He used to collect `65,000 for the release of each pattadar passbooks to landowners.
During the raid, the ACB officials noticed that that Rama Rao also manipulated the official website to make money illegally. The ACB officials said that Rao used to tamper with the data on the website and then demand and accept bribes from the owner to rectify the change he had made.
“So far we have found a few such cases and investigation is on in this regard,” Mr Prasad said. Based on concrete information, the ACB teams raided four places in Vizag, two in Hyderabad and one in Rajahmundry.
The documents seized were of a three-storeyed house at Akkayyapalem, one house at Vepagunta, one plot measuring 220 sq yd at Vepagunta, two apartments in Narasimhanagar, two floors of commercial space in Kapparada, one plot at Butchirajupalem in Vizag and two apartments in the names of his two sons-in-law in Hyderabad.
Mr Prasad said that apart from the immovable properties, they also seized `13.4 lakh in cash from his house at Akkayyapalem and `28.97 lakh in cash from the house of his elder son-in-law in Rajahmundry.
The ACB officials also found bank balance to the tune of Rs 56 lakh in the name of the tainted officer and his family members besides one kg gold in his house at Akkayyapalem.
This apart, ACB found about 1,030 gm gold in the house of his younger daughter, another 348 gm in the house of his elder daughter. From the four lockers the ACB officials unearthed 250 gm of gold.