Telugu Desam Party (TDP) chief Chandrababu Naidu was arrested at around 6 a.m. from R K Function Hall at Gnanapuram in Nandyala town in an alleged Andhra Pradesh Skill Development Corporation scam, the state police said on Saturday morning. Following this, several TDP leaders have also been placed under house arrest.
Naidu has been arrested under relevant IPC sections, including Sections 120B (criminal conspiracy), 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), and 465 (forgery). In addition, AP CID has also invoked the Prevention of Corruption Act against him.
“This is to inform you that you have been arrested… at 6 am at R K Function Hall, Gnanapuram, H/o Moolasagaram, Nandyala town and it is a non-bailable offense,” the notice read.
What is the AP Skill Development Corruption Case?
The APSSDC was established in 2016 during the TDP government in Andhra Pradesh. The program focused on the empowerment of unemployed youth by providing skill training.
The AP CID started an investigation into an alleged scam worth ₹3,300 crore in March which revealed that the project was initiated without following a proper tendering process, according to a report published by the media.
Apart from this, the investigation also uncovered several other irregularities in the program which include no project approval from the Andhra Pradesh cabinet, failure to invest resources of Siemens Industry Software India (a part of the consortium involved in the MoU signed by the TDP government), and funneling of funds allocated for the project into shell companies, as per the media reports.
An internal investigation into the project by Siemens Global Corporate Office revealed that the project manager had diverted government-allocated monies to shell businesses through hawala transactions. The project manager was consequently fired, the media reported.
The task of developing six centers of excellence for skill development was given to Siemens Industry Software India when the project was launched.
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