The Supreme Court on Tuesday issued a notice to Telugu Desam Party chief Chandrababu Naidu on a petition filed by Andhra Pradesh challenging the regular bail granted to him in connection with an alleged scam involving the state skill development corporation, reported Live Law.

The Crime Investigation Department had arrested the former Andhra Pradesh chief minister on September 9 for allegedly siphoning off approximately Rs 371 crore from the state skill development corporation using shell companies.

The Andhra Pradesh High Court had granted four-week interim bail to Naidu on October 31 on medical grounds and then regular bail on November 20. Justice T Mallikarjuna Rao had directed Naidu to abstain from participating in any public rallies till November 28, when his interim bail expired.

Hearing Andhra Pradesh’s plea on Tuesday, a bench of Justices Bela M Trivedi and Satish Chandra Sharma reiterated that Naidu should not make public comments or speak to the media about the case till December 8, which is the next date of hearing.

The bench, however, lifted the High Court’s direction prohibiting the Telugu Desam Party chief from organising or participating in public rallies.

According to the state’s petition in the Supreme Court, the corruption allegations against Naidu stem from a project involving the state government, Siemens Industry Software (India) Private Limited and DesignTech India Private Limited, for the establishment of skill development centres in the state.

Naidu has been accused of expediting the incorporation of the Andhra Pradesh Skill Development Corporation and overruling objections that the enterprise required cabinet approval. He made key appointments to the corporation and entered into a memorandum of understanding with Siemens and DesignTech without any tendering process for the work to be done by them. It was also alleged that Naidu released funds for the project prematurely in defiance of objections raised by the finance secretary.

In September, the Andhra Pradesh Crime Investigation Department described Naidu as the “principal conspirator” behind the alleged skill development scam. “[He] orchestrated the transfer of the public funds from government to private entities via shell companies,” CID chief N Sanjay had said, The Hindu reported.