Roads minister Dharmana Prasada Rao submitted his resignation “on moral grounds” on Tuesday after the CBI named him as an accused in the fourth chargesheet in the Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy illegal investments case. Mr Rao met Mr Kiran Kumar Reddy at his camp office immediately after returning from New Delhi late in the evening and put in his papers, not heeding the request of the Chief Minister and several colleagues to reconsider the decision.
The Chief Minister also suggested that legal opinion could be obtained on the chargesheet and the matter could be discussed in the Cabinet. “My conscience is clear and the truth will come out after the final investigation,” he said, adding, it would not make any difference in his life if he was not a minister.
The minister told mediapersons that he would come clean and prove the CBI charges wrong. "It is a personal decision to quit," he said. Maintaining that he served Congress for decades, he said his decision to quit was to protect the credibility of the party. “The Chief Minister informed me that he would take a decision on my resignation after studying the chargesheet,” he added.
Dharmana charged with hiding info
It’s a bumpy road ahead for R&B minister Dharmana Prasada Rao. The CBI has accused him of concealing information and of allotting lands to Vanpic projects despite being present at the Cabinet meeting. It appears that instead of 4,000 acres of land meant for the two ports, which could be allotted in the name of Vanpic Ports Pvt. Ltd., a special purpose vehicle created for execution of the project, 24,000 acres of land were allotted for a port-based industrial corridor to Vanpic Projects Pvt. Ltd., a company incorporated and co-mpletely controlled by Nimmagadda Prasad.
Mr Prasad is the Indian partner of the integrated project developer. It is understood that Vanpic projects got huge concessions from the revenue department in the form of GOs during Mr Prasada Rao’s term. The revenue department, it seems, helped Nimmagadda Prasad to illegally acquire lands in favor of Vanpic projects under the guise of development of backward regions. IAS officials M. Samuel and Manmohan Singh, who were in the revenue and industries department respectively, were also named in the chargesheet. Dr Manmohan Singh has been accused of drafting the letter which was to be sent to district officials of Prakasam and Ongole.
Party to decide my future: Dharmana
Infrastructure minister G. Srinivasa Rao met Dharmana Prasada Rao at the airport lounge when he returned to try and persuade him against submitting his resignation. The two proceeded to the Chief Minister’s Camp Office together from there. Earlier, Mr Rao had told his confidants that the image he had built over the last 30 years would be ruined if he did not resign.
“This kind of crucial situation comes only once and we shall not err,” he said, adding that it would be a great humiliation for him if the Chief Minister sacked him and that he would never forgive himself for inviting such a situation. “It is for the CM and Central leadership to decide whether my services are required for the government and the party,” he apparently said.
DCPublished Date: 2012-08-14 13:51:24 GMT