CBI probes deep into Yarapathineni’s illegal mining

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TDP member and former Gurazala MLA Yarapathineni and his associates have now become the focal point of a major investigation by the CBI, into the alleged illegal mining activities run by Yarapathineni.

CBI officials, on Thursday, raided Yerpathineni’s residence and office in Guntur, as well as 25 other places, including Dachapalli, Nadikudi, and the house of the accused in Hyderabad. This sudden raid took everyone by utter surprise. The CBI said that it would look into the extent of the natural resources that were plundered because of this mining, with the help of satellite images.

A total of 17 members have been booked under this illegal mining case by the CBI, of which 13 members happen to be close associates to Yarapathineni. YSRCP member and former MLC TGV Krishnareddy filed a petition in the High Court of Andhra Pradesh in 2016, about the illegal mining activities in the state. When the High Court expressed great disdain towards these activities, the previous government had conducted an investigation which barely touched the surface of the issue.

In this investigation, it was shown that only 31 lakh metric tonnes of limestone was looted by the mining mafia in Sitaramapuram of Piduguralla district, Dachepalli district, Kesanupalli and Nadukudi areas. This turned out to be a major breather for the mining mafia, which thought that the worst was over for them.

According to a satellite survey conducted by TGV Krishnareddy, with the help of National Remote Sensing Center (NRSC), it is estimated that 68.53 lakh metric tonnes of white stone was stolen from Kesanupalli, Nadikudi from July 2015 to January 2017 and from September 2015 to March 2017 in Sitaramapuram. He also submitted this evidence to the High Court in July 2017. The PIL, filed in 2016, alleges that 34 lakh metric tonnes were stolen between 2014–15. According to the satellite survey evidence filed in court, the mining mafia stole up to 1.50 crore metric tonnes of limestone, including satellite estimates of illegal mining between January 2017 and July 2018.

With the CBI now digging really deep into the matter, it is being said that Yarapathineni and his associates are scared of what all might surface and become public knowledge. Back then, they somehow managed to get out of the issue unscathed, but with changed governments, that seems to be an impossible task right now.

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