By Special Correspondent
It is known to the public that the famous industrialist-cum-sand mining baron, Sekhar Reddy is behind bars, following the I-T raids in his house as well as his offices. There is a wild rumour that if Sekhar Reddy opens his mouth, it would be problematic for Delhi and if he doesn’t, it would be for TN for sure.
The long and short of Sekhar Reddy’s story so far is that when the general public including the poor, old and the sick in every walk of life were finding it next to impossible to draw hard cash from the ATMs, the I-T investigating authorities were able to seize substantial quantum of new Rs.2000/- notes from the house and offices of Sekhar Reddy and his accomplices. The common man who was forced to stand in serpentine queue in banks, ATMs, Post Offices etc. was otherwise shell-shocked at this episode. Consequently, Sekhar Reddy and his accomplices were arrested and sent to Puzhal prison. Though within a few months, Sekhar Reddy got released against bail, he was again sent back to prison. Despite the fact that Sekhar Reddy is behind bars, there are many VIP visitors calling on him for one reason or the other. All said and done, it is clearly understood that the series of I-T raids have started only after this incident.
It is gathered that even during the recent I-T raids in the house and office of the Minister Vijayabaskar, there was some mention about Sekhar Reddy. Earlier, there were some IT raids in the house and office of both the Chief Secretary Rama Mohana Rao and his son wherein a diary containing certain details was seized based on which only subsequent raids have been conducted. In fact, only after the raid in the house of Minister Vijayabaskar, the by-election at RK Nagar has since been cancelled.
This particular scenario has instilled a sense of fear and doubt in the minds of the TN ministers and officers holding public offices. Many a close associates of Sekhar Reddy have met him in the prison and Sekhar Reddy also seems to have frankly shared that if he opens his mouth it will create a havoc in the central ministry and if doesn’t, it will shake the TN Government beyond repair. It is further observed from a close and reliable source that Sekhar Reddy has had a great influence in the Poes Garden by means of his sand mining business deals. Similarly, he has very close connection with certain important persons in the BJP at Delhi. In reality, the green signal for conducting the raid in Sekhar Reddy’s house was given by the Centre only after due and long consultations at the Centre. It was widely known that Sekhar Reddy had the secret custody of several properties, gold assets and cash in crores with which he used to help both Assembly and Lok Sabha elections. Despite his clandestine dealings at all levels, he remained totally harmless to anyone. But, eventually, he only became the victim of the recent TN politics. He has been currently watching the developments of TN politics from the prison. Those who are still in the good books of the Centre with the influence of Sekhar Reddy are presently escaping the attention of I-T Department. However, I-T authorities have been tightening their grip on others in their own ways.
Enforcement Wing is obviously keen on depriving Sekhar Reddy of any opportunity to come out of jail. That is why Sekhar Reddy was again arrested even though he was released on bail recently. Further, he is being closely monitored by the investigating officials inside the prison. The news of I-T raid on Minister Vijayabaskar’s house did reach Sekhar Reddy in the jail. But he did not react at all in any manner. Even this was noted and passed on to the higher authorities.
It is also informed that steps are being taken to detain Sekhar Reddy in the prison itself based on the incriminating documents that have been found in his house and offices earlier. Only on this ground, even this time, he has been re-arrested. Two of the ministers who are otherwise close friends of Sekhar Reddy and some more ministers of TN Government are presently under the scanner of I-T authorities. Sources of I-T Department have revealed that sooner or later they would conduct search operations in their houses and offices. Simultaneously, details of Sekhar Reddy’s visitors and his movements are being continuously watched and reports are being submitted to the concerned higher authorities. On this basis only – still particularly, after the visit of one close friend of AIADMK party to Sekhar Reddy in the jail, the latest IT raid is reported to have taken place. This has sent some shock waves to Sasikala and her men.
In the meantime, Sasikala party members have conducted some meetings with those who had business contacts with Sekhar Reddy and taken some important decisions. Accordingly, Sasikala team has decided to cull out the undisclosed account details of those members who belong to Panneerselvam’s side for handing over the same to I-T for necessary investigation as deemed fit. In the process, if the I-T authorities fail to take necessary action in this regard, Sasikala team has further planned to approach even the courts. Ultimately, all the dramas that are going to be staged at the expense of Sekhar Reddy are going to be out in the days to come.