The Enforcement Directorate on Friday said it has attached assets worth over Rs 148 crore in connection with a money laundering probe in cases related to YSR Congress leader Jagan Mohan Reddy and others. The agency said its zonal office here issued provisional attachment order, under sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), for “illegally allotted lands of 11,804.78 acres to the companies of Nimmagadda Prasad in Prakasam and Guntur districts of Andhra Pradesh.” The value of the attached assets is Rs 148.89 crore, it said. The central probe agency said the case pertains to alleged corruption and quid pro quo investment where Prasad, various companies and individuals made “huge investments in companies floated by Reddy for the favours received from the erstwhile government of Andhra Pradesh…when late Y S Rajasekhara Reddy (Jagan’s father) was the Chief Minister.”
The ED in a statement said its probe revealed that Prasad “paid bribe to Reddy in the form of investments at exorbitant premiums in his various companies to the tune of Rs 779.50 crore apart from making payment of Rs 57 crore to him in the guise of secondary purchase of shares and donation of Rs 7 crore to YSR Foundation”. In lieu of the aforesaid “quid pro quo payments” made by Prasad, it said, he was illegally favoured by the then Andhra government by awarding the project for the development of Vadarevu-Nizampatnam Port and Industrial Corridor (VANPIC) by “deviating” all standard norms and without examining the technical and financial capabilities.
The ED began its probe against the politician and his associates on the basis of a CBI FIR. The FIR stated that since “May 2004, Jagan floated number of companies wherein quid pro quo investments have been made by beneficiaries from decisions of the state government in various forms like SEZs (special economic zones), irrigation contracts, relaxation/permission for real estate ventures, mines among others.”