Ramakrishna, a 43-year-old businessman, allegedly died by suicide along with his wife and twin daughters at Paloncha town on January 3 and blamed the MLAs son.

Vanama Venkateshwara Rao
news Controversy Friday, January 07, 2022 - 21:01

The ruling Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) on Friday suspended its member Vanama Raghavendra Rao, accused of abetting the suicide of a businessman and three of his family members in Bhadradri-Kothagudem district. Following instructions from Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao, also the chief of the TRS, the party leadership suspended Vanama Raghavendra Rao, son of Kothagudem TRS MLA Vanama Venkateswara Rao, in the wake of allegations against him. The suspension orders will be enforced with immediate effect, they said.

Meanwhile, an extensive search was on to nab the absconding MLA's son, police said on Thursday even as protests by various opposition parties continued demanding immediate arrest of the legislator's son. A senior police official said eight teams were formed and they were extensively searching for Vanama Raghavendra Rao adding that they were tracing his location and that he will be taken into custody soon.

The official said efforts were underway and support from police of other districts was also being taken and police teams were searching for Vanama Raghavendra Rao in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh and other places. The official further said his statements will be recorded in connection with other cases also that were filed against him previously.

Ramakrishna, the 43-year-old businessman, allegedly died by suicide along with his wife and twin daughters at Paloncha town on January 3. In a video that surfaced later on January 6, which the victim Ramakrishna had recorded before his death, he alleged that Raghavendra had demanded sexual favours from his wife Srilakshmi in exchange for mediating favourably in a property dispute within his own family. Earlier, Vanama Raghavendra Rao had denied the charges levelled against him. Police said they have submitted the selfie video in a local court.

Read: Telangana suicide victim’s selfie video emerges, TRS MLA’s son named again

Srilakhsmi’s brother Janardhan has also alleged that he has been receiving threats from henchmen of the MLA’s son. "At first, they called me saying they wanted to visit the girl (Sahiti) who was still undergoing treatment, so I asked them to come to the hospital. They came there and threatened me, asking me to withdraw the police complaint and leave Paloncha immediately. They even said I would face the same fate as my sister and brother-in-law if I don’t comply,” said Janardhan, speaking to TNM from Rajahmundry in the East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh. Janardhan alleged that he received the threat from unknown henchmen of the accused Raghavendra.  

Also read: Kin of Telangana family who died by suicide alleges threats from TRS MLA’s son 

Earlier, in a purported suicide note left by him, the victim had held the MLA's son responsible for taking the extreme step. The note also mentioned the names of the mother and elder sister of the deceased with whom he had a property dispute. The police had registered a case under Indian Penal Code Section 306 (abetment to suicide) against the trio. Vanama Raghavendra Rao went absconding since the FIR was lodged against him.

Condemning the incident, several political parties including the Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee, BJP, and Left parties have demanded stringent action against the accused. The opposition parties, which on Thursday had held protests, again staged protest demonstrations by raising slogans and took out rallies on Friday as part of a bandh call demanding the arrest of Vanama Raghavendra Rao. At some places, shops remained closed. The protesters also demanded that a rowdy sheet be opened against the absconding accused. Expressing deep concern over the incident, the ruling party MLA in an open letter said he and his family will cooperate with the police and judiciary in Ramakrishna's suicide case and other incidents allegedly involving his son.

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