The investigation into the turmeric scam in Andhra Pradeshâ€™s Nellore district has resulted in criminal cases being filed on Monday against 17 leaders of the TDP and the YSRCP.
Interestingly, cases have also been filed against YSR Congress Party leaders, who had earlier pointed fingers at some TDP leaders, and alleged their role in the scam.
Cases were booked against eight YSRCP leaders and nine TDP leaders, according to The New Indian Express.
The TNIE report adds that though officials remained tight-lipped, two alleged culprits who were associated with the TDP, had been identified. They were Rajasekhar (Raja), private secretary of TDP MLA Bollineni Venkata Rama Rao from Udayagiri, and S Ravindra Babu, Mandal Praja Parishad President of Duttaluru.
District Collector Muthyala Raju ordered a probe into the scam in June this year, following complaints from farmers and allegations from political parties about low-quality turmeric being sold at the Procurement Centre in Udayagiri.
Following a preliminary investigation, some VROs were found guilty of issuing false cultivation certificates to benamis of political leaders.
Earlier this week, Joint Collector Venkata Subba Reddy, who is investigating the case, established the role of 19 VROs including Markfed District Manager, Y Ramadevi and suspended them.
Speaking to TNM, Nellore District Revenue Officer Venkata Subbaiah said, "The Collector issued the suspension orders to the VROs for misappropriation of public money."
When asked about the quantum of funds misappropriated through the scam, the DRO said that he could not reveal this, as a full assessment was still being carried out.