ED conducts searches at TRS MP Nama Nageswara Rao’s residence for bank fraud

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Hyderabad: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Friday conducted searches at the residence and offices of the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) MP from Khammam, Nama Nageswara Rao in connection with a Rs 1,064 crore bank fraud.

The ED began conducting searches at six locations including residences of Nageshwar Rao and his son Pruthvi Teja, CMD of Ranchi Express Way K Srinivasa Rao, director N Seetaiah, along with their offices. Searches began at 7 am, Times of India said in a report.

More details regarding the searches are awaited.

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After a first information report (FIR) was filed by the CBI in 2019, fraud was detected in the four-lane road project between Ranchi-Rargoan-Jamshedpur on NH-33 worth Rs 1,151.60 crore. The promoters of Nama-led Madhucon Infra Ltd., who were awarded the project in March 2011, are said to have diverted Rs 264.01 crore.

Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) also found that a loan of Rs 1,029.39 crore was released by the consortium of banks to M/s Ranchi Expressway but there was no commensurate progress in the project.

The loan became a non-performing asset in 2018. In January 2019, the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) terminated its agreement with the company and forfeited Rs 73 crore.

A charge sheet was then filed by the CBI against Ranchi Expressway Ltd. and its directors in 2020.

With declared assets of over Rs 119 crores, Nama Nageswara Rao is one of the richest Indian politicians. He was formerly a Telugu Desam Party (TDP) politburo member before joining the TRS in 2019.