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Ex-Telangana minister denies allegations in phone tapping case

With the phone tapping case in Telangana getting murkier by the day, Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) leader and former minister E. Dayakar Rao on Tuesday denied allegations that he along with a police official involved in the case illegally detained a businessman and extorted Rs 50 lakh.

He also denied any involvement in the phone tapping case, in which three police officials have been arrested. “I don’t know why I am being dragged into this matter. I have nothing to do with the phone tapping case,” he said and claimed that the allegations are part of a political conspiracy.

Dayakar Rao told media persons that he does not know who Charan Chowdary is. He claimed that Charan Chowdary was suspended from BJP following allegations of land grabbing against him. He had also allegedly cheated NRIs after collecting money from them, the BRS leader said.

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The former minister said Chowdary had also cheated a person named Ajay. He clarified that he knows only the NRIs who were cheated. He said Charan has several cases against him as he was allegedly involved in encroachments by creating fake documents.

Dayakar Rao said that he was into politics for 40 years but never faced any allegation. He also denied any links with Praneeth Rao, the suspended DSP of Special Intelligence Bureau (SIB) arrested in a phone tapping case.

The BRS leader claimed that pressure was being brought on his friends to change the party. “I will not change the party no matter how much pressure they bring on me,” he said. The former minister alleged that there was pressure on him and cases were booked to make him change the party during the times of Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy.

Dayakar Rao’s clarification came amid the continuing probe by the police into the allegations that the previous BRS government misused SIB to tap phones of then opposition leaders. The matter came to light with the arrest of Praneeth Rao on March 13 for destroying evidence.

He had allegedly erased data by destroying 50 hard disks after the defeat of BRS in Assembly elections. During the questioning of Praneeth Rao by the SIT, names of other officers allegedly involved in the case surfaced.

N. Bhujanga Rao, Additional Superintendent of Police in Bhupalpally district and Tirupathanna, Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police, City Security Wing, Hyderabad City Police were arrested on March 23.

They had earlier served in the SIB as Deputy Superintendents of Police. Police have already issued a lookout notice for former SIB chief Prabhakar Rao, former additional DCP of the City Task Force P. Radha Kishan Rao and iNews TV channel MD Shravan Rao.

SIB is an anti-Maoist intelligence unit but Praneeth Rao was allegedly tasked with the job of gathering political intelligence along with a 10-member team. He was allegedly keeping tab on the opposition leaders and directly reporting to Prabhakar Rao.

Prabhakar Rao, considered close to then chief minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao, resigned as SIB chief after the Congress party came to power.

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