HYDERABAD: Former GST official Srinivasa Bollineni Gandhi who was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Wednesday, in a disproportionate assets case, allegedly furnished fake COVID-19 positive reports fabricated in the name of his family members to escape arrest.
Bollineni Srinivasa Gandhi in a last-minute effort to prevent his arrest is said to have made phone calls to his insiders and pressurised them to stop the arrest. When the CBI officials came home, they were informed that he had prepared and kept reports that his family members were COVID-19 positive. However, upon verification, CBI officials found out that they were fake.
The CBI registered a case against Bollineni Gandhi last year where he is allegedly said to have demanded a bribe of Rs 5 crore from a Hyderabad-based businessman in a case. He demanded Rs 10 lakh in cash and the remaining Rs 4.90 crore as lands in the suburbs of the city. The CBI registered a case as per the victim's complaint in this regard.
Despite the bribery case and possessing assets beyond his income, Bollineni was promoted last December.
However, following a series of complaints, the Central Board of Indirect Taxes issued orders suspending Bollineni Gandhi from Central GST on February 24.
In 2019, the CBI registered a case against Bollineni Srinivasa Gandhi and his wife in a case of assets exceeding income. Raids were conducted in various parts of Telangana and AP and assets worth crores were identified. The value of those assets in the open market is estimated to be more than Rs 200 crore. According to a preliminary investigation by the CBI, Srinivasa Gandhi's assets increased by 288 per cent between 2010 and 2019 which was worth Rs 3,74,74,046.
It is also alleged that he had influenced and dissuaded the witnesses from joining the investigation and disclosing the relevant facts of the case. Despite repeated notices to come to trial in connection with the case, Gandhi neither responded nor cooperated with them in the probe, CBI officials said. He was produced before a local court and remanded in judicial custody until May 7, a press release from the CBI said.