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CBI arrests Naidu aide Bollineni in DA case

CBI arrests Naidu aide Bollineni in DA case

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested Srinivasa Bollineni Gandhi on Tuesday in a disproportionate assests case.

A CBI official said on Tuesday that a case was previously registered against Gandhi, besides others including Chiluka Sudha Rani and Satya Sridhar Reddy for allegedly demanding `5 crore for input credit with regard to GST.

The accused was a close aide of former AP chief minister N. Chandrababu Naidu as one of the longest serving officials in the Enforcement Directorate, from 2004 to 2017. There were many allegations against him in the past too.

Sources in the CBI said Gandhi was arrested as he failed to cooperate with the investigation. Despite several notices issued by the investigating agency, Gandhi had refused to cooperate.

Gandhi had earlier served in the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for more than seven years and handled high-profile money laundering cases.

Gandhi is also facing a CBI probe in another scandal. He along with suspended GST deputy commissioner (services tax anti-evasion) Chilaka Sudha Rani were named as accused in Rs 5 crore bribery scandal.

The CBI, in July 2019, conducted searches on Gandhi’s properties in Hyderabad and Vijayawada and unearthed Rs 4 crore worth of assets.

Bribe giver Satya Sridhar Reddy Jagan Nagari, director of Bharani Commodities Private Ltd, an accused in the GST tax evasion case, was also booked by the CBI in the FIR issued on September 11, 2019.

Gandhi and Sudha Rani led investigation in March 2019 and detected a fake invoice fraud where Rs 1,289 crore was raised and found Rs 224 crore illegal input tax credit involving eight companies linked to Sridhar Reddy and others.

The two officials were later accused of demanding Rs 5 crore bribe from Bharani Commodities. The duo accepted Rs 10 lakh cash in advance on April 15, 2019. Sridhar Reddy allegedly paid Rs 10 lakh to the officials to prevent the arrest of his wife in the case.

Gandhi had initially worked in the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence between 2002 and 2012 and later in the ED from 2012 to 2019.

He later was made a superintendent in GST commissionerate and promoted, on an ad hoc basis, as assistant commissioner. He, however, was suspended from GST wing after the DA case was filed.

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