ED searches ex-Hyderabad Cricket Association officials in money laundering probe

ED searches ex-Hyderabad Cricket Association officials in money laundering probe

New Delhi, Nov 22 (PTI) The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday said it has conducted searches against former office bearers of the Hyderabad Cricket Association, including former Indian cricketer Shivlal Yadav and Congress candidate Gaddam Vinod, as part of a money laundering investigation.

The raids were launched on Tuesday at nine locations in Telangana and the residences of Yadav, Vinod, the Congress candidate from Bellampalli seat in Adilabad district, and Arshad Ayub were covered apart from the office of S S Consultants Pvt. Ltd. and the residential premise of its managing director (MD), Satyanarayana.

Gaddam Vinod, Shivlal Yadav and Arshad Ayub have served as the president, vice president and secretary of the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) respectively at various points of time, the ED said in a statement.

The raids led to the seizure of digital devices, 'incriminating' documents and 'unaccounted' cash of Rs 10.39 lakh, it said.

Search at one of the premises of Gaddam Vinod revealed that it was being used as an office for several companies owned and controlled by his brother Gaddam Vivekanand, former MP and Congress candidate from Chennur assembly seat.

The money laundering case stems from three FIRs and chargesheets filed by the Telangana anti-corruption bureau (ACB) for alleged criminal misappropriation of the funds of the HCA to the tune of Rs 20 crore.

'The chargesheets contain allegations of serious irregularities in the procurement of DG sets, firefighting systems and canopies for Rajiv Gandhi Cricket Stadium constructed in Uppal, Hyderabad,' the ED said.

According to the police chargesheets, despite deadlines, several works were delayed inordinately leading to escalated costs and budget enhancements and corresponding losses to the HCA.

It was found that the office bearers of the HCA including its then secretary, president and vice-president and others, in collusion with private parties, 'arbitrarily' got various tenders and works allotted to preferred vendors/contractors at higher than market rates without following proper tender processes and in many cases even before the receipt of quotations, the agency alleged.

Advance payments were made to many contractors but no work was done by them, it added.

The ED said it also seized documents that indicate that Visaka Industries, a company linked to Gaddam Vivekanand, and its group companies have been regularly indulging in 'large-value cash transactions' and cash payments related to their real estate activities.

'Several instances of receipt of cash from various persons and passing of adjustment entries in such real estate companies' books for accommodating such transactions have been noticed from the seized documents,' the agency said. PTI NES CK CK

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