Tamil Nadu sand mining baron Shekar Reddy was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation on Wednesday after Income Tax department officials found unaccounted for wealth in crores from the premises of office he owns, reported ANI. The I-T sleuths seized currency notes worth Rs 106 crore, including more than Rs 10 crore in the new bills and 127 kg gold, during their raids at eight locations in Chennai. Reddy has been remanded in CBI custody till January 3.
The businessman was expelled from the Tirumala Tirupati Devasthana after the I-T Department raided his premises on December 8 and 9. Reddy had reportedly visited Apollo hospital to offer the temple’s prasad to formere Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa on October 12, when she was undergoing treatment before her death on December 5.
Earlier on Wednesday, I-T officials raided Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary P Ramamohan Rao’s home in Chennai’s Anna Nagar neighbourhood as well as his office at the state Secretariat. Rao, who was appointed to his post in June, allegedly has close links with Reddy. Reddy is well connected to many bigwigs and was involved in sand quarrying across the state in the last few years, according to The Indian Express. Scroll.in had reported earlier that Reddy had replaced O Arumugasamy as the biggest sand miner in the state after the latter fell out of Jayalalithaa’s good books.