Authorities of the Andhra Pradesh government on Friday seized a little over 5 acres of land, estimated to be worth several crores in the market, from the family of former AP Planning Board Vice-Chairman C Kutumba Rao.
Kutumba Rao is a close aide of former Chief Minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) President N Chandrababu Naidu. The land situated in Madhura Nagar in Vijayawada has now been seized by Revenue officials from Krishna district.
After a visit by District Joint Collector Madhavi Latha on Friday, officials razed a shed that was built on the premises, and also put up boards declaring the land to be property of the Andhra Pradesh government. It also said that trespassers would be prosecuted.
Media reports state that the dispute relates to 5 acres of land, which Kutumba Rao's family gave to the Railways several decades ago, to ensure that they don't lose ownership under the Urban Land (Ceiling and Regulation) Act (1976).
Speaking to a local media outlet, Kutumba denied the allegations and called it a 'false' case. He also claimed political vendetta by the ruling YSRCP government.
Chandrababu Naidu had also recently commented on the issue, telling reporters that “Railways had taken the land belonging to Rao’s brothers. As no compensation was paid, they filed a case in 1997 and the High Court as well as Supreme Court gave judgements on the issue...(Recently), the Railways filed another case and the SC gave status quo order on the issue. But, without issuing any legal notice, the state government set up boards at the land notwithstanding the status quo order,’’ he said.
Last month, demolition work began on an under-construction multi-storey building owned by the wife of a former TDP MLA, after a notice served by the Greater Visakhapatnam Municipal Corporation (GVMC), as the structure allegedly violated regulations.