Rs. 500 Cr worth big fish raided by ACB in AP

Venkata Raghu threatens to commit suicide

Guntur: Anti-corruption bureau sleuths on Monday raided AP Town Planning Director Golla Venkata Raghu’s house and the residences of his benamis and discovered unaccountable properties worth Rs. 500 Cr.

The raids began early in the morning at 23 places at Vijayawada, Gannavaram, Guntur, Visakha, Rajahmundry, Mangalagiri, Nellore, Shirdi and Tirupati. The raids were continuing at the time of publishing this report. 

When the teams raided his house at Mangalagiri, Raghu threatened to commit suicide if he was arrested. “On what basis, you have raided me,” he reportedly questioned the raiding teams.

Officials also raided the offices and houses of Venkata Siva Prasad and his wife Gayatri, who were benamis of the big fish. Most of the properties are found in the name of Gayatri who once worked in the town planning department as technical engineer. She recently quit her job to manage benami properties of Venkata Raghu.  Venkata Siva Prasad is a close relative of Raghu.

Promissory notes running into crores, gold  and diamonds worth Rs. 19 Cr, gold statues of Gods and Goddesses, cash running into lakhs were among the properties found in the raids from the house of Venkata Siva Prasad who is a junior technical officer in Vijayawada Municipal Corporation.

At Mangalagiri, the sleuths seized two cars, of which one is exclusively used for his pet dog by Venkata Raghu. Documents to prove that he and his cousins were constructing Kalyana Mandapam in an area of 1.40 acres at Gannavaram were seized. They also seized documents that said he had purchased 16 flats under construction at Gannavaram.

It is also learnt that Siva Prasad owns 300 acres real estate land at Gannavaram.  A few other properties Venkata Raghu and his benamis reportedly owned are as follows: 

  1. House site of 1033 Sq Ft at Bommaluru near Vijayawada. It is registered in his wife name.
  2. 2 Acres and 6 cents of  Agricultural land at Velpur in Krishna district
  3. Two house sites of 428 Sq Ft each at Pulivellam in Chittor district in the name of his daughter
  4. House site of 167 Sq Ft in Visakha town in the name of his mother-in-law
  5. A duplex house and lodge at Shirdi pilgrim town in the name of his mother-in-law

Officials are taking time to value the worth of the properties’s documents found in the raids. The correct worth of the illegal properties owned by Venkata Raghu and his benamis will be known when the raids are completed and value of properties estimated.  

ACB chief said: “Please wait. The raids are continuing and the value of the properties is running into hundreds of crores.”