Initiating one of its biggest criminal actions in a money laundering case, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) today attached assets worth Rs 863 crore of YSR Congress leader Jagan Mohan Reddy and his associates in connection with its probe into alleged corruption in an infrastructure project in Andhra Pradesh.
The agency slapped separate notices against Jagan Mohan Reddy and Nimmagada Prasad whose companies were allegedly favoured by the then AP government (when Jagan's father Y S Rajasekhara Reddy was Chief Minister) in the Vadarevu and Nizampatnam Industrial Corridor (VANPIC) project whose aim was to develop sea ports and a green field airport in coastal areas of the southern state and industrial corridors in Prakasam and Guntur districts.
The ED had in 2012 registered a criminal probe under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) against the individuals and associated firms based on a CBI FIR in this case.
The ED probe said there was 'quid pro quo' in this deal and hence illegal money exchanged hands.
"Various concessions were extended to the VANPIC project in the form of alienation of huge chunks of assigned government land to the companies floated by Nimmagadda Prasad, development of shipyard, green filed airport, exemptions from levy of stamp duty and registration charges, deed-signing fee and other undue benefits were extended," the ED probe report said.
The CBI chargesheet, which the ED relied upon, said "illegal gains to the tune of Rs 1426.17 crore was made to Prasad in the acquisition of lands and Rs 854.54 crore was made to Jagan Mohan Reddy and his companies as quid pro quo by Prasad and his companies."
"This is one of the biggest attachments done by the ED in a money laundering case. The assets will now be seized," sources privy to the development said.
The properties which have been attached, the ED notice said, are in the name of "Jagan Mohan Reddy and his companies Ms Carmel Asia Holding Pvt Ltd and Jagathi Publications Ltd" along with Prasad and his firms "G2 corporate services Ltd, Alpha Villas Pvt Ltd, Alpha Avenues Pvt Ltd, Gilchrist Investment Pvt Ltd, Suguni Constructions Pvt Ltd and Beta Avenues Pvt Ltd."
Sources said the attached assets are broadly divided into various financial instruments.
While Rs 365.45 crore of shares, plant and machinery of the project have been attached, fixed deposits of Rs 4.14 crore in the name of Jagathi Publications Public Ltd, Rs 10.44 crore shares of Indira Television Pvt Ltd and Jagan Mohan Reddy's various properties worth Rs 11 crore have been attached among others.
This the fourth PMLA attachment order issued by the ED in this case and the three earlier such orders had a value of approximately Rs 265 crore.
Under the latest order, Rs 57 crore shares of Sandur Power Co Ltd, another set of shares of Sandur Power Public Ltd worth Rs 35 crore and immovable assets of Rs 2.55 crore held by Prasad, shares of JPPL held by Alpha Avenue of Rs 97.81 crore, shares of JPPL held by Alpha Villas of Rs 35.89 crore, shares of JPPL held by Gilchrist Investment Pvt Ltd of worth Rs 44.78 crore, land worth Rs 5.80 crore owned by Ms G2 Corporate Services Pvt Ltd, shares of Silicon Builders Pvt Ltd held by G2 Corporate Services Pvt Ltd worth Rs 44.20 crore, shares of Silicon Builders Pvt Ltd held by Ms Suguni Constructions Pvt Ltd worth Rs 7 crore, lands of value Rs 23.23 crore, 561.20 acres held by Ms Vanpic Ports Ltd and land worth Rs 27.72 crore and area of 855.71 acres held by Ms Vanpic Projects Ltd have been attached.
An attachment order under PMLA laws is an enforcement action to restrict the accused from taking benefit out of the properties or assets they have created through illegal means.