"This week, a series of media reports - including on NDTV - explored whether Jagan and Janardhana have ever formally shared business interests"
That amazing assertion has been picked up from an NDTV report, filed on September 8th,2011 will make you think some extensive research did go into "exploring" the best known open secret!
Let's briefly look at this "exploration" - Sakshi newspaper's registered address is also the registered address of two other firms, one of which has a stake in Obulapuram Mining Company owned by Gali Janardhana Reddy and the other is a iron ore trading company that invested money in Sakshi. This superb "exploration" was carried out by the media after a CBI enquiry revealed this known fact! Some snippets of this exploring report- "In June 2007, YSR was seen....at the inaguration of ... Brahmani steels". Seen? Yo NDTV - he actually inagurated it! One more - "NDTV visited the address ...". Let's leave it at there and revisit this point later in the article.
ohh, by the way, a mandatory reading before reading this piece is Part 1 , otherwise the context is not set correctly.
Bro. Anil Kumar
Can you possibly imagine the outrage on english TV media, if Yeddyurappa's father-in-law's son-in-law's nephew's sister's husband used hundred rupees of public money for a purely religious event?
Let's now get to the point :)
In 2008, suddenly we saw a spurt of banners in Hyderabad, through which we were introduced to Brother Anil Kumar.
(pic courtesy, rediff)
Many of us did not know who Bro. Anil Kumar was. Since it was around Christmas time, we thought that this was another evangelist organising a gathering. And then it was revealed that Bro. Anil Kumar is none other than the son-in-law of the Chief Minister, Y.S.Rajashekar Reddy! And now all that sudden publicity overdrive made lot of sense. The opposition parties began questioning the source of funds (not just the "communal" BJP but even "secular" TDP. so...) for Bro.Anil Kumar's little known evangelical organisation, Anil World Evangelism. Suddenly from nowhere, where is he getting the money to spend crores on publicity and is able to mobilise lakhs of people (even in other cities)? Was government machinery used for these purposes? Was undue influence used so as to favour the Chief Minister's son-in-law? How come a relatively unknown organisation, Anil World Organisation suddenly get so rich?
The Bayyaram Mining Lease
- Bayyaram is a mandal in Khammam district of Andhra Pradesh.
- The above mentioned organisation, Anil World Evangelism is registered in the same apartment complex as that of another company, Rakshana Steels.
- The Andhra Pradesh Mineral Development Corporation had entered into a joint venture agreement with - hold your breath - Rakshana Steels for mining iron ore in Khammam and Warangal districts in February 2009 when YSR was the chief minister.
Now that's an address NDTV never visited, despite there being a huge uproar in the state back in 2010! A random report was filed though. "It is alleged" blah blah.
You want to take a guess on how much land was given on lease - 1.37 lakh acres. Ofcourse, Rakhsana steels denied that Bro.Anil Kumar was holding any position in their company. Until the next day when regional newspapers published details of registered addresses of both companies in the same apartments! (unfortunately I am not able to find a snapshot of those reports. If only telugu newspapers maintained a proper archive section, life would be so much easier. Sigh!)
And so now we have the spectacle of 1.37 lakh acres of land being alloted for iron ore mining, to a company that is promoted by Bro.Anil Kumar (I won't even bother using the word "alleged" here!). Mark it in bold people - The Chief Minister's son-in-law is given a lease to mine iron ore over 1.37 lakh acres. Investigative media like the NDTV did not find the time to neither visit the address nor express outrage.
Spirited opposition attacks on the government in Assembly elicited this response from the govt. - Rakshana Steels will only transport the steel from the mining area. Actual mining will be done by the government only! And if you still insist that this is a opposition conspiracy, then you need to answer why this same Congress government at the centre cancelled the lease in August 2010 (after YSR's death and Jagan's revolt), that it only allowed in the first place?
MAYTAS Land deals
Remember Satyam? No no, am not trying to accuse YSR of the scam done by Ramalinga Raju! Ramalinga Raju's son owned MAYTAS infrastructure (reverse SATYAM and you get MAYTAS! This is how Raju created tens of bogus companies to carry out his scams - shuffle letters, rearrange them etc etc). MAYTAS was given infrastructure deals worth Rs.30,000 crore !! And they were given deals into projects that they have had no prior experience and are not some small building a mall or a road kind of projects. One project was to build a port! The other famous project, which eventually had to be scrapped and re-drawn again, was the Hyderabad metro! This article by a known opponent of the Metro rail project is very revealing as to how Maytas was getting good real estate for cheap. Out of the blue, MAYTAS was favoured. Ofcourse, after the scam broke out, when asked - YSR said that all deals have been given to consortiums so not a big problem if one of them fails!
A curosry mention of this scam was made in part-1 but wanted to touch this briefly here. The person standing behind YSR in the below picture is an extremely well-known face to the people of AP.
His name is Sureedu. He was almost ALWAYS seen with YSR everywhere he goes. He had no official position till 2008. After objections from many quarters, YSR appointed him as one of his security officers and therefore his position became official! Most of us just thought he was just YSR's lucky charm or something like that.Until the DPEP scam broke out!
DPEP is the District Primary Education Program, run on funds that the central government gives to the states. By now, we are used to and have become immune to small scams in all departments and programs. When the scam first broke out, the mood was the same. A former teacher from Kadapa district, Sarasa Devi connived with an accountant Subramanyam, to open a fake bank accounts and eat money that was left over in DPEP funds. When the scam first came out, a fraud case for Rs. 7.40 crore was filed.
And guess whose name the accountant took in the investigations? He said that Sarasa Devi could run this show with the help of ..... Sureedu ! The amount maybe small, but the shock value was quite high. YSR promptly instituted a judicial commission that promptly said Sureedu is not guilty!
The EMAAR-APIIC scam
ok folks - this will be last scam to be discussed. I guess we are really reaching a break point here! There are two primary reasons for mentioning this scam.
- This scam was unearthed by a serving Congress minister in the state, D.L.Ravindra Reddy. He says that this scam can easily be estimated at Rs.10,000/- crore.
- The timing of the government raids on properties concerning this deal. Let's get into the details.
Those of us who watch TV news regularly in AP are very familiar with this man, Ambati Rambabu
Ambati Rambabu, along with a few others, were the most vociferous spokespersons of Congress party, on TV. To be frank, Rambabu is a good orator and a good argumentative guy. His rhetoric though got boring after a while. He was steadfast in supporting YSR and the congress party in all TV debates. You could see the loyalty and passion in his arguments. (A shameless plug here :) - Ambati Rambabu was on his rhetorical drive on drought situation in AP, in one of the TV debates. I could call in to the debate, and asked him only one Q - Can you list out the specific things the govt did to control this drought - guess the answer. He said, nothing specific has been done so far! This was on channel TV5 some 2 years back!).
Anyways, getting back to the point. After YSR's death, amongst all those vociferous spokespersons of the Congress party, only Rambabu voiced support for Jagan. Right from day 1, Rambabu has been scathing in his criticism of the Rosiah govt, Sonia Gandhi and high in his praise of Jagan. You should see the debates to believe his high energy levels. So now officially Rambabu is against the congress govt and is a Jagan loyalist.
And hence the witch hunt begins! Rambabu was the chairman of AP Industrial Infrastructure Coporation (APIIC). APIIC is the organisation that gives permissions for various SEZs and IT campuses to come up in the state (Now you get the importance of this position? :D). APIIC entered into a deal with EMAAR in 2002 (yeah, when TDP was in power!) to construct a township project near Hyderabad. 74% to EMAAR, 26% to APIIC. After Congress came into power, this deal was diluted in such a way that APIIC will get about 6.5%. Plus, apparently more than half the villas/plots in this township have been officially sold at Rs.5000 per sq yard, but unofficially at Rs. 45,000 per sq yard! The calculation was done by the Congress minister himself, and therefore we now had the spectacle of the Rosaih government conducting raids on establishments that entered into a deal with YSR government! Indian Express explores if APIIC is robbed left, right and centre here. Wonder why NDTV never "explored" this?
The above cited project is just example. There have been a deluge of reports in the media about more such "deals" by APIIC, only after Rambabu was kicked out from the Congress.
Everyone is clean as long as they are in Congress and hail the High Command. The minute you stop doing either of them - you become corrupt and raids happen on your establishments. So the Congress High Command was sleeping all these years?
Still if you are keen, happy cursory reading on the Outer ring road scam, temple land scam,Jalayagnam scams (also mentioned in part-1 in some detail), Nadergul land scam . Where there is land, there is a scam!
And please note again - ministers of Congress party are themselves filing cases against corruption done when Congress party was in power; office bearers of Congress party are accusing the son of their former CM of mammoth corruption!
I am not mentioning the scams that happen below the level of a minister. Those scams, though can be avoided, cannot be blamed on the Chief Minister directly. The above mentioned scams (and the ones in part-1) are mostly at the level of the Chief Minister (along with his family). And that's exactly what differentiates all this loot (by both the central and state government leaders) from all other previous corruption cases - these happened with the direct involvement and knowledge of the highest decision making authorities.
And yet YSR won. How? Coming up in the next blogpost :)