ED causes tremors in TDP

NTR Trust Bhavan under scanner

TDP’s worst fears have come true. As anticipated, the Congress government seems to be making use of the AP High Court order to bog down the party in unexpected cases.

The issuance of notices by The Enforcement Directorate to NTR Trust and others under Foreign Exchange Management Act (Fema) is one such move.

Surprisingly, ED’s action was not a follow-up on the High Court order, because the department, like the CBI, is yet to receive the papers from the court.

Fema is a very drastic law, which stipulates imprisonment even for minor offences. Under FERA a person was presumed guilty unless he proved himself innocent.

ED apparently acted on the petition submitted earlier by YSR Party honorary president Vijayamma against the alleged irregularities in NTR Trust Bhavan affairs. The ED has now asked NTR Trust which receives donations from NRIs to explain whether any of these funds were diverted to the party.

If the Trust is found to have diverted any of these funds to TDP, then it amounts to violation of Fema rules. N Sridhar, joint director of Hyderabad ED, confirmed sending notices to the Trust and others. The notices were also issued to Nara Lokesh, along with Sujana Chowdary and C M Ramesh of Ritvik Projects.

Lokesh was asked to explain how his foreign education was funded. Lokesh did his MS and later his MBA in the US. YSR Congress has been alleging that Lokesh could secure his seat based on the donation made by Satyam Ramalinga Raju amounting to Rs 22 crore to Stanford University.

Even in the Jagan’s case, it is Fema that the YSR Congress Party is worried about. The allegation was that Jagan routed funds from foreign soil through Sandur Power to Jagati Publications. Foriegn investment in media is restricted and needs government’s approval, which reportedly was neither sought nor obtained by Jagan.

The Centre refused to give Fema approval earlier for Blackstone investment in Ushodaya Enterprises, and recently to Srini Raju of Peepal who wanted to infuse funds for his TV9 bouquet.

 

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