The Andhra Pradesh government has cleared the cabinet sub-committee recommendation for a CBI probe into several alleged irregularities that took place when the TDP regime was at the helm of affairs in the state.
The development comes in the backdrop of raging hostilities between the ruling YSRCP and the opposition TDP.
Briefing media after the cabinet meeting here on Thursday, Minister for Information and Public Relations, Perni Venkataramaiah, said that the cabinet sub-committee which studied the matter has submitted its report and recommended a CBI inquiry into the alleged irregularities in the AP Fibernet (Optic Fibre Grid) project, and purchases made for Chandranna Sankranti Kanuka, Ramzan Tofa and Christmas Kanuka schemes.
The minister said that preliminary investigations found that a large number of irregularities, including nepotism, had occurred in the AP Fibernet Project. Apart from allotting the project to people who are not qualified for carrying out the project, corruption to the tune of Rs 700 crore has taken place in the project, he alleged.
The project had been allotted to Terra Software, a company owned by Vemuri Harikrishna Prasad, who is said to be very close to the TDP leadership.
“The contract was given to Terra Software setting aside the bid of a Central government institution, though it was the lowest bidder. Even during the distribution of set-top boxes, four companies were called and the government agreed to share the contract, but in reality only the Terra Sofware was given the entire distribution of work,” he said.
“Similarly, in welfare schemes like Chandranna Sankranti Kanuka, Ramzan Tofa and Christmas Kanuka, irregularities were found during the procurement of supplies, where nearly Rs 150 crore of corruption was identified in primary investigation. Purchases, including milk products, were made in an arbitrary manner and on all these irregularities, the cabinet has ordered for CBI enquiry for further investigation,” the minister said.
The last few days have seen the two principal political players in Andhra Pradesh targeting each other with claims and counterclaims. A couple of days back, the TDP had issued a charge sheet against the YSRCP government on completion of its first year in office.