The Madras High Court quashed two of the three FIRs filed against mining baron Sekar Reddy by the CBI on Wednesday. It also ordered the CBI to add the information of these two quashed FIRs to the first one.
In December 2016, after demonetisation, the Income Tax department conducted raids on the properties of Sekar Reddy, his relatives and friends. New Rs 2,000 notes worth Rs 34 crore and gold were seized from his office in Vellore.
The CBI and Enforcement Directorate together had filed three FIRs based on the seizure made from Sekar Reddyâ€™s office in Vellore in December 2016. While one FIR was for the seizure of Rs 24 crore, the other two FIRs were for the seizures of Rs 8 crore and Rs 1.5 crore.
Based on these FIRs, Sekar Reddy and 4 of his accomplices were arrested in December 2016. Sekar Reddy was then out on bail, only to be arrested by ED in March 2017.
The accused had moved the Madras HC to quash the FIRs filed on Rs 8 crore and Rs 1.5 crore. They had submitted that there was no particular reason to file three separate FIRs on the seizure and that it was done only to extend the punishment duration.
This case was heard by Justice Baskaran on Wednesday. He ordered the CBI to add the details mentioned in the second and third FIRs to the one for Rs 24 crore and conduct the investigation based on the single FIR.
Following the raids on Sekar Reddyâ€™s properties in December 2016, raids were also conducted in the properties of Ram Mohana Rao, the then Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu and his family members. He was then removed as the Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu following the raids.