The Sadavathi land auction case took a major turn on Tuesday, with the Hyderabad High Court issuing orders for the Andhra Pradesh government to conduct fresh bidding, and fixed the minimum price of the land at Rs 27.4 crore.
YSRCP MLA Alla Ramakrishna Reddy had earlier moved court, alleging that the auction of the 84-acre land in Chennai was a 'fraud'.
He alleged that the land, auctioned by the AP Endowments Department to a Telugu philanthropist for Rs 22 crore, was actually worth Rs 1,200 crore.
The issue had first come up in 2016, with opposition leaders claiming that orders from the CMO to auction 83 acres at Rs 22 lakh per acre, was much lower than the government rate of Rs 50 lakh.
When the petitioner moved court, Andhra's advocate general Dammalapati Srinivas threw a challenge, claiming that the state was ready to transfer the land in question, if the MLA could pay more than the final auction winner.
Last month, Reddy's counsel submitted that they had managed to find buyers, who were prepared to pay Rs 5 crore more for the land.
Accepting the claim, the court warned Reddy that a fine of Rs 1 crore would be imposed on him, if he failed to pay up, and adjourned the case to two weeks.
When Reddy successfully paid up the money, the court refused to hand over the land to him, but ordered that a fresh auction be conducted.
â€œEndeavour of the court is to see that more money comes to the government and we are right now not handing over the lands to the petitioner and let a fresh auction be held," the court ruled.