Chennai: The Income Tax raids on Tamil Nadu Chief Secretary P Rama Mohana Rao, relatives and associates have resulted in a windfall, with seizure of Rs 48 lakh in new currency and gold worth Rs 2 crore. The raids extended to 14 locations.
The raids which started with Rao’s residence in the wee hours of Wednesday were later extended to the residence of Rao's son P Vivek, relatives and associates in Chennai, Bengaluru and Chitoor. Apart from Rs 48 lakh in new notes, 7 kg gold was also seized. Some reports have put the seized gold at 10 kg, and jewellery also. Most of the gold and jewellery was seized from Rao’s residence. Reports in Chennai media said that documents of property worth Rs 100 crore too were found.
Rao’s office at the state secretariat was also raided for 5 hours. He is the first serving Chief Secretary of the state to face such an action. The IT officers took about 40 documents from Rao’s office.
Interestingly, Rao is also the state vigilance commissioner.
During the raid, Rao’s residence and office were guarded by armed CRPF personnel.
As part of the operation, IT officials also raided the home of D K Badri Narayana. Narayana is brother of liquor baron and former TTD trust board chairman D K Adikesavulu Naidu. Rao’s son Vivek is married to Narayana's daughter. Vivek’s house in Bengaluru was also raided.
Meanwhile, shortly after the raids CBI arrested sand mining baron J Shekhar Reddy. It is from Reddy’s house that IT officials had seized cash and gold worth more than Rs 180 crore last week. About 177 kg gold bars and Rs 135 crore cash was seized then.
Raids on Rao followed after information that Rao had links with the sand mining baron. The Chennai IT officials were constantly updating their bosses during the raid. Sources said that raids happened after orders from top bosses.
IT officials termed Rao a big catch as he is likely to spill many more under hand dealings in the last 5 years. Raids on many politicians, businessmen and many serving and retired to bureaucrats are not ruled out for links with sand mining baron Reddy.
Rao was appointed chief secretary 6 months ago by Jayalalithaa. He superceded 20 IAS officers for the post. He replaced Gnanadesikan , who was suspended on graft charges. (News24Bureau)