SC to Hear Naidu's FIR Quash Plea on Skill Scam After Diwali Vacation

VIJAYAWADA: The Supreme Court would deliver its verdict on Telugu Desam president and former chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu’s FIR quash petition in the AP skill development scam case after Diwali vacation. The vacation is from November 13 to 18.

A division bench comprising Justices Aniruddha Bose and Bela Trivedi heard Naidu’s petition on Thursday against the AP high court’s recent order rejecting anticipatory bail in the AP Fibernet scam case.

The court told Naidu’s counsel Siddartha Luthra that as the verdict in
Naidu’s FIR quash plea in AP skill development scam case would be delivered after Diwali vacation, Naidu’s plea on anticipatory bail in AP Fibernet scam case could be taken up after that.

The apex court completed the hearing on the FIR quash petition and reservedits order.

Meanwhile, AP government counsel Mukul Rohatgi told the court that Naidu was granted interim bail on medical grounds by the AP high court for four weeks from October 31 to November 28 in the AP skill development scam case and was released from the central prison.

However, when the court proposed the hearing of Naidu’s petition seeking anticipatory bail in AP Fibernet scam case to be done on November 23, Siddartha Luthra expressed his inconvenience to attend hearing. Accordingly, the court asked the registry to post the matter for November 30.

Notably, the AP CID filed a case in connection with AP Fibernet phase-1
project scam in 2021, vis-a-vis manipulation of the tender process to allot the work order of Rs 330 crore to a favoured company by “flouting the rules and manipulating the tender process.”

The CID states that several irregularities took place from the allotment of tender to till completion of the total project, causing huge loss to the
state exchequer. There was the use of substandard material, violation of conditions and non-adherence to the specifications mentioned in the RFP while executing the project. Nearly 80 per cent of the capacity of the optic fiber cable was rendered unusable, it noted.

The deviations committed at the time of execution of the Fibergrid phase-1 contract caused loss of nearly Rs 114 to the state exchequer, the CID averred.

The CID submitted a memo to the ACB special court, adding former chief minister Chandrababu Naidu as the 25th accused (A-25) on September 19, 2023.

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