Former Andhra Pradesh Intelligence chief A B Venkateswara Rao who engineered the defection of 23 YSR Congress Party MLAs into the then ruling Telugu Desam Party in connivance with N Chandrababu Naidu, former Chief Minister, has been issued a fresh disciplinary notice by the Chief Secretary Aditya Nath Das late on April 19. He has been given 30 days to send a reply.
Mr Venkateswara Rao of 1989 batch of the IPS was the right-hand man of Mr Naidu. Earlier, he was placed under suspension for “wilfully disclosing intelligence protocols and procedures of police to a foreign defence manufacturing firm. This is a direct threat to national security as intelligence protocols are standard throughout the Indian Police Force.”
Mr Rao “colluded with one RT Inflatables Private Limited, an Israeli defence equipment manufacturer, to illegally award critical intelligence and surveillance contract to his son A Chetan Sai Krishna, who was CEO of Akasam Advanced Systems Pvt. Ltd. (primary bidder on behalf of RT Inflatables Pvt. Ltd.) directly breaching ethical code of conduct and Rule (3) (a) of All India Service (Conduct) Rules, 1968.”
Based on facts uncovered via investigation, prima facie evidence is established on the grave misconduct and irregularities, which were wilfully committed by the accused officer resulting out of conscious and premeditated act of treason towards the state and the nation. The Supreme Court is hearing a petition filed by Mr Rao to strike the suspension.
Another big allegation is that Mr Rao connived with Mr Naidu in political corruption through repression of YSR Congress Party MLAs. Mr Naidu welcomed 23 MLAs who were elected on YSR Congress Party ticket into the treasury benches.No only did Mr Naidu ensure that none of them were disqualified according to provisions of the Ant-Defection Act, but he went to the extent of inducting two if the defecting MLAs into his Cabinet. Mr Rao played a key role in intimidating members of the legislative assembly into joining the ruling party.
Government, in the fresh development on Sunday, decided to initiate disciplinary proceedings against Mr Rao, formerly Additional Director General of Police, Intelligence, in accordance with the procedure laid down under Rule 8 of the All India Services (Discipline & Appeal) Rules, 1969, in connection with a press conference he held in the secretariat after attending an inquiry conducted by the Commission of Inquiries on April 4, 2021.
At the press conference Mr Rao reportedly violated service rules by making adverse criticisms against the Government, the police department proceedings against which were still in progress and the Anti-corruption Bureau of intimidating witnesses and fabricating documents.
Mr Rao was directed to submit a written statement of his defence and also state whether he desires to be heard in person, within 30 days of receipt of this order.
He was informed that an enquiry would be held, only in respect of those Articles of Charge which are not admitted and in case if it is considered necessary. The Member of Service should, therefore, specifically admit or deny each Articles of charge.
And if no written statement of defence was filed within the time specified, or if he does not appear in person before the Competent Authority or otherwise fails or refuses to comply with the provisions of rule 8 of All India Services (Discipline & Appeal) Rules 1969 or the orders or directions issued in pursuance of the said rules, action would be taken against him based on the material available on record on the ground that he had no explanation to offer.Rule 18 of AIS rules
The attention of Mr Rao, drawn to Rule 18 of the All India Services (Conduct) Rules, 1968, according to which no member of Service should bring or attempt to bring any political or outside influence to bear upon any superior authority to further his interests in respect of matter pertaining to his service under the Government. If any representation is received on his behalf from another person in respect of any matter dealt within these proceedings, it will be presumed that Mr Rao, is aware of such a representation and that it has been made at his instance and action will be taken against him for violation of Rule 18 of All India Services (Conduct) Rules, 1968.