VIJAYAWADA: A day after AP Planning Board Vice-Chairman C Kutumba Rao clarified that there were no irregularities in choosing the arranger for issuance of Amaravati Bonds, former MP Undavalli Arun Kumar suspected a conflict of interest in the issue as the arranging firm -- AK Capital Services -- purchased some of the bonds.
He also accepted the challenge thrown by Kutumba Rao for a discussion on the ‘Raja of Corruption’ book released by the TDP on former Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy.Speaking to reporters in Rajamahendravaram on Thursday, the former parliamentarian said, “First, the firm had offered to provide services as a merchant banker for one rupee, then for `17 crore it donned the role of the arranger for the bonds. Later, the firm itself claimed to have purchased the bonds. Doesn’t this amount to a conflict of interest.”
He further asked Kutumba Rao as to why the State government was calculating how much interest the investors would pocket after tax deduction.For the record, Kutumba Rao, in a press conference in Vijayawada on Thursday, said that the arranger was chosen transparently through tenders. He further defended the high interest rate fixed by the government, saying, “While the interest rate is 10.32 per cent, the investors would get only around 8 per cent as the bonds are not tax-free.”
Undavalli also expressed readiness to discuss the irregularities in execution of Pattiseema and Polavaram projects. “Earlier, the police in Vijayawada did not permit me to participate in a challenge extended by TDP MLA Gorantla Butchaiah Chowdary. If Kutumba Rao informs a date and place, I am ready for the debate,” he asserted.