In a sensational turn of events, former Andhra Pradesh minister and Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leader Bhuma Akhila Priya was arrested on Wednesday for the abduction of Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s close relatives in Hyderabad on Tuesday evening.
Former hockey player Praveen Rao and his brothers Sunil and Naveen were kidnapped from their home in Hyderabad’s Bowenpally area around 7pm on Tuesday. At 3:30am on Wednesday, the kidnappers left the victims at Kokapet and fled.
Police have named Akhila Priya’s uncle AV Subba Reddy as prime accused, while also booking the former Andhra minister and her husband Bhargava Ram in the case. Involvement of others, including Priya’s brother and former MLA Jagadwikhyath Reddy and brother-in-law Chandrahas is also suspected.
Addressing a press conference, Hyderabad City Police Commissioner Anjani Kumar said, “Other suspects including Bhagava Ram and AV Subba Reddy are absconding and a search is underway. We are taking help from Andhra Pradesh police.”
Revealing details of the kidnapping, Kumar said that the culprits entered the victims’ home as income tax officers with a fake search warrant and identity cards. They locked up the other family members in a room and fled with the brothers. Kumar also confirmed that the incident took place in connection with a dispute over a piece of land worth Rs 100 crore in Hyderabad’s Hafeezpet.
Akhila Priya is the daughter of politicians Bhuma Nagi Reddy and Shobha Nagi Reddy who were associated with the Congress, TDP, Praja Rajyam and the YSR Congress Party. After the death of her mother in 2014, she was elected as an MLA of YSRCP from Allagadda constituency of Kurnool District.
Later, Priya and her father joined the TDP. After the sudden demise of her father in 2017, she went on to become a minister in Chandrababu Naidu’s cabinet, but was defeated in the 2019 elections.