VISAKHAPATNAM: In a major development in the murder case of rowdy-sheeter Gedela Raju, the City Police arrested three more persons, including the two main accused—vernacular daily editor Bhupathiraju Srinivasa Raju and YSRC leader Dama Subba Rao— on Wednesday. However, the cops are yet to ascertain the facts in the alleged murder of former MLA K Nookaraju’s daughter K Padmalatha with whom the prime accused in the case, DSP Ravi Babu allegedly had an extra-marital affair. Sources said that Ravi Babu has been taken into police custody for further interrogation.
The accused hired a nine-member gang to eliminate Gedela Raju whose charred body was found on October 6. The arrested also included Kesav, driver of Kshatriya Bheri editor Bhupathiraju Srinivasa Raju. “Apart from Ravi Babu, both Dama Subbarao and Bhupathiraju had developed a grudge on Gedela Raju. Subbarao and Bhupathiraju had encroached upon a site at the Airport zone registered in the name of one Naga Prasad who sought the help of Gedela Raju to get back his land.
Gedela Raju threatened Dama Subbarao asking his share from the encroached land a number of times,” joint commissioner of police (JCP) D Nagendra Kumar said while producing the accused before the media here on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, Gedela Raju, besides threatening Ravi Babu, also warned Bhupathiraju Srinivasa Raju to settle the remaining `50 lakh allegedly promised to him for eliminating Padmalatha. After Ravi Babu discussed the issue with Bhupathiraju and Dama Subbarao, all hatched a plan to get the rowdy-sheeter killed. “We will register another case on the benami land issue too. The land is said to be owned by a retired government employee. Further investigation will bring the truth to light,” said Nagendra Kumar.
The JCP also said that some more accused were yet to be arrested.