The income tax searches going on in the residences and offices of Telugu Desam Party Rajya Sabha member and industrialist C M Ramesh and his brothers seem to have unearthed a big financial fraud, if the reports coming from inside sources are to believed.
Ramesh and his brothers are putting up a brave front saying the Income Tax authorities had hardly found anything in their searches.
The MP in fact said the IT officials had finished their job within a couple of hours, but spent time till evening having cups of tea and watching television.
However, sources said the authorities had dug up deeper into the financial transactions of the MP and his inflated bills on various projects.
They also found that the income of Rithwik Projects had gone up by 145 per cent in a span of two years between 2015 and 2017.
The authorities also discovered siphoning of funds into shell companies floated by Ramesh with Kadapa as the base.
Though there is no immediate threat to Ramesh as of now, as the authorities would focus more on tax evasion and unearthing source of money, rather than arresting him.
But what is more important is that the raids would result in stoppage of flow of funds into the Telugu Desam Party kitty for spending in the coming elections.
“The whole exercise of the IT raids is to disconnect all the routes of income to the TDP for spending in the next elections. If the TDP is deprived of funds, the BJP has won the half of the battle,” sources said.
Earlier, one does not know how much the Income Tax department sleuths have found during their raids on the residences and offices of Telugu Desam Party Rajya Sabha member and industrialist C M Ramesh, but social media circles are abuzz with the reports of meteoric rise of Ramesh in the last four years.
There were allegations that Ramesh made big money through bootlegging during the prohibition time between 1994 and 1996.
He used to smuggle illicit liquor from Karnataka borders into the Rayalaseema districts and used to make huge profits.
Subsequently, he got into the activity of doing road and building contracts and from there, into constructing big projects.
During the searches on Ramesh’s residence at Potladurthy village of Yerraguntla mandal, the Income Tax Depart officials reportedly seized a bunch of documents reportedly related to various contract works of Handri Neeva Sujala Sravanthi (HNSS) Galeru Nagari Sujala Sravanthi (GNSS) Veligonda tonnel works, Gandikota rehabilitation package etc works being performed Rithwik project owned by CM Ramesh family members.
They reportedly took away a suitcase-load of documents from his house and placed it in the income tax department car dickey under tight security after accepting taking signatures of two witnesses proposed by Ramesh.
Sources say Rithwik Projects was almost bankrupt before 2014. But, Ramesh managed to get contracts worth over Rs Rs 3,658 crores which were awarded to Rithwik by chief minister N Chandrababu Naidu on nomination basis without calling for tenders.
These contracts are listed below:
1. Kuppam Branch Canal: Rs 522 crore
2. Handri-Neeva Phase-II: Rs 1,000 crore
3. Handri-Neeva expansion work: Rs 195 crore
4. Handri-Neeva 34th package: Rs 234 crores
5. Galeru Nagari Project: Rs 350 crore
6. Veligonda Tunnel: Rs 270 crore
7. Telugu Ganga lining: Rs 289 crore
8. Guntalakal branch canal: Rs 172 crore
9. Vamsadara project works: Rs 120 crore
10. Rayalaseema Thermal Power Project Sixth unit: Rs 400 crore
11. Rehabilitation of Gandikota project evacuees: Rs 106 crore (with 12% excess)
Total amount: Rs 3, 658 crores #KhabarLive