Transport Department unearths major vehicle scam by JC brothers

The Andhra Pradesh Transport Department has announced that it has unearthed a major scam by former Anantapur MP J.C. Diwakar Reddy's brother J.C. Prabhakar Reddy's family.

They were alleged to have got Bharat Standard (BS) III vehicles illegally registered and brought them to Anantapur from Kohima in Nagaland. Joint Commissioner Transport S.A.V. Prasad Rao (Road Safety) at a press conference here on Saturday said a case was filed in Anantapur I Town Police Station on Saturday with regard to 66 trucks plying in Anantapur and Kadapa districts, that were not BS-IV compliant.

The BS-III vehicles were illegally registered in Kohima (Nagaland) and transferred to Tadipatri within two to 15 days with an NOC (No Objection Certificate) from Nagaland.

Driving fraud

Following a complaint received by the Department, it conducted its own investigation by sending officers to Kohima and found some 'shocking' details. When the Department officers digged out the permanent and temporary addresses of the persons/companies that got them registered there, they found details with certified copies of the original documents submitted at the time of registration in August - September 2018, related to six lorries (160 bhp capacity, 10, 12 & 14 wheelers), which were purportedly bought from Hosur and Uttarakhand dealers of Ashok Leyland. When cross-checked with Ashok Leyland on January 10 about the Chassis and Engine Numbers of these BS-III vehicles, the company replied through e-mail on January 23 that they were sold as scrap, as they were unregistrable and 'no' records were uploaded onto the Vahan portal.

From the Kohima Road Transport/Registration Office, the A.P. officials got documents that showed as if all of these 66 vehicles were BS-IV compliant and Purchased from dealers in Hosur and Uttarakhand for a business in Kohima.

Family involvement

Signatures on the registration documents pertained to J.C. Prabhakar Reddy's wife J.C. Uma Reddy and C.

Gopal Reddy representing C. Gopal Reddy and Company and Jatadhara Industries Private Limited, with headquarters at Tadipatri. These vehicles (NL01AC - 1087, 1077, 3680, 3676, 3679 and 1066) were brought to Anantapur with NOCs from Kohima within 15 days of registration and re-registered in Andhra Pradesh at various times.

All these vehicles reportedly ply in Tadipatri and Kadapa regions to carry goods related to cement factories. Anantapur Deputy Transport Commissioner N. Sivaram Prasad lodged the complaint with the police seeking a probe against manufacturers, dealers or the buyers to find out who was primarily responsible for the alleged fraud.

Giving details of the case, Mr. Prasad Rao said: "As per the Supreme Court directive, from April 1, 2017, BS-III vehicles were not to be registered and 50 per cent less polluting BS-IV vehicles only registered. But C.

Gopal Reddy and Company and Jatadhara Industries Private Limited, with permanent address at Tadipatri got 66 of them registered as BS-IV vehicles and sold them to several people after bringing them to Anantapur, thus selling BS-III scrap as BS-IV original vehicles."

Scam could be bigger

The size of the scam unearthed so far will be determined by the Police Department and the Mr.

Prasad Rao does not rule out more number of such vehicles plying in the country.

This illegal method could be another potential danger in the coming months when BS-VI emission norms become compulsory from April 1 all over the country for registration of new vehicles, officials point out.

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