Arrested HMDA ex-director amassed assets worth Rs 250 crore, finds probe

ACB officials said he allegedly acquired the assets by indulging in corrupt practices and dubious means during his service

Hyderabad: The Hyderabad Metropolitan Development Authority’s (HMDA) former Director Shiva Balakrishna, who was arrested last month in a disproportionate assets case, has allegedly amassed assets to the tune of Rs 250 crore, it was revealed on Wednesday.

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The Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) found during the investigation that properties located in different districts of Telangana were registered in his name, and in that of his family members and relatives.

The anti-graft agency identified 214 acres of agricultural land, 29 plots, seven flats in different apartment complexes, and a villa. The properties were identified based on his questioning by the ACB during eight days police custody.

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The document value of these properties is Rs 13.3 crore but the market value is estimated to be around Rs 250 crore.

The investigating officers also identified three persons who were acting as ‘benamis’ (proxies).

With his police custody coming to an end on Wednesday, the ACB produced him before the court and he was later shifted to Chanchalguda Jail.

The ACB officials are planning to get his custody once again for further probe into the illegal assets.

Based on the investigation during the last eight days, the ACB on Tuesday arrested his brother, Shiva Naveen Kumar.

After a three-day interrogation, the agency arrested Naveen Kumar, who was allegedly acting as Balakrishna’s benami.

Balakrishna was Secretary of Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) and Chief General Manager, (Land Management) of Hyderabad Metro Rail Ltd when he was taken into custody by the ACB on June 24 following searches at his premises.

The ACB had conducted searches at his house and 16 other places belonging to his relatives, friends and other associates. During the searches, cash amounting to Rs 99,60,850, gold ornaments weighing 1,988 gm, and silver ornaments weighing around 6 kg were found in his house and other places.

Several incriminating documents about the assets possessed by Balakrishna in both his and his kin and aides’ names were unearthed. He was found in possession of assets worth Rs 8.26 crore.

ACB officials said he allegedly acquired the assets by indulging in corrupt practices and dubious means during his service.

The ACB registered a case under Section 13(1)(B) read with Section 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act of 1988 (as Amended in 2018). Following his arrest, the Municipal Administration and Urban Development (MA&UD) Department has placed the official under suspension. The agency received complaints that while serving as HMDA Director, he allegedly granted permissions for illegal layouts.

Officials said they were looking into these complaints.

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