TIRUPATI: After the arrest of former minister K Atchannaidu in connection with the ESI Scam on Friday, yet another senior party functionary and former legislator JC Prabhakar Reddy along with his son Asmit Reddy were arrested by the Andhra Pradesh police on Saturday in connection with a major scam unearthed by the Andhra Pradesh road transport department in Anantapur district.
On February 8 earlier this year, Joint commissioner transport (Road safety) SAV Prasad Rao exposed a major scam involving former TD MP JC Diwakar Reddy's brother JC Prabhakar Reddy's family. Joint commissioner SAV Prasad Rao said that based on their complaint Anantapur I town police registered a case with regard to 66 trucks plying in Anantapur and Kadapa districts which were not BS-IV compliant. It was exposed back then that the companies owned by the JC family brought illegally registered BS-III vehicles from Kohima in Nagaland and transferred them to Tadipatri within 2-15 days with a no objection certificate (NOC) from Nagaland.
During the course of the enquiry, the transport department which sent some of its officers to Kohima stumbled upon shocking details. When the officers tried to trace the permanent and temporary addresses of the persons/companies that got the BS-III vehicles registered illegally as BS-IV compliant, they found details with certified copies of the original documents submitted at the time of registration between August-September in 2018. Those documents were related to six trucks (160 bhp capacity, 10,12 & 14 wheeler trucks), which were purportedly brought from Hosur and Uttarakhand dealers of Ashok Leyland.
When the transport department officials contacted Ashok Leyland for information related to the Chassis and engine numbers of these BS-III vehicles, the company replied through email that these trucks were sold as scrap, as they were unregistrable and ''no'' records were uploaded into the Vahan portal.
From the Kohima road transport/registration office, AP officials secured documents which showed as many as 66 BS - III vehicles were registered as BS-IV compliant which were all purchased from dealers in Hosur and Uttarakhand for a business firm in Kohima, which in turn were purchased by the JC family owned transport firms.
AP Transport department found out that the signatures on the registration documents of nearly 154 non BS-IV compliant trucks, belonged to JC Prabhakar Reddy's wife JC Uma Reddy and C Gopal Reddy representing C Gopal Reddy and company and Jatadhara industries private limited which are headquartered at Tadipatri in Anantapur district.
These 154 vehicles were brought to Anantapur with NOCs from Kohima within 15 days of registration and re-registered in Andhra Pradesh later. While a majority of these trucks continue to ply in Tadipatri and Kadapa regions, some vehicles were re-registered at Vijayawada, Nellore and other parts of AP. Transport department also found out that nearly 28 trucks were sold off and re-registered in other parts of the country too.
The crux of the scam exposed by the AP transport department was that ''As per the Supreme court directive, from April 1, 2017, BS-III vehicles were not to be registered and 50 percent less polluting BS-IV vehicles only were to be registered. But C Gopal Reddy and company and Jatadhara industries linked to JC Prabhakar Reddy's family illegally acquired 154 BS-III vehicles as scrap, re-registered them by obtaining NOCs from Kohima and sold such vehicles as BS-IV compliant vehicles, causing crores of rupees loss to the state and the country''.
Several people who realized they were duped by Jatadhara industries which sold them BS-III vehicles as BS-IV compliant vehicles, staged protests demanding criminal action against JC Prabhakar Reddy recently.
Following the exposure of the AP transport department and the public outcry, JC Prabhakar Reddy and his son Asmit Reddy were arrested by the Anantapur police at Shamshabad in Telangana and were being shifted to Anantapur on Saturday.
SOURCE : TIMESOFINDIA