During Chandrababu Naidu’s regime, Jasti Krishna Kishore as the CEO of the AP Economic Development Board was the key man to contact if any industrialist wanted to invest in Andhra Pradesh. Six months after the change in guard, the 1990 batch IRS officer finds himself suspended and facing a CID probe into an alleged case of criminal misappropriation.
The Industry department has accused Kishore of irregularities in the manner in which he pursued investments for Andhra Pradesh. Kishore was ordered by chief secretary to face both the CID and Anti-Corruption Bureau inquires and not leave Amaravati till the investigations were over within the next six months.
The treatment meted out to Kishore elicited the expected response from Naidu. The former chief minister accused Jagan of vendetta as Kishore had slapped tax notices on Jagan’s media house when he was Income Tax commissioner in Hyderabad.
But what has raised eyebrows is a slightly different treatment meted out to another IRS officer, Venkata Gopinath. Despite former chief secretary LV Subramanyam’s recommendation to order an ACB probe against him for decisions taken during his tenure as Managing Director of AP Medical Infrastructure Corporation, Gopinath’s request for cancellation of his deputation has been allowed by the YSRCP government. He has now been repatriated to his parent department.
Why this policy of different strokes is significant is because Gopinath is former Finance minister and senior TDP leader Yanamala Ramakrishnudu’s nephew. This decision blunts the TDP attack on Jagan and takes the wind out of Naidu’s sails. It also ensures Ramakrishnudu would not join issue with Naidu over Krishna Kishore.
With Kishore out of the picture, Jagan has appointed Pratap Beemreddy as the Special Representative to bolster investment into Andhra Pradesh and the APEDB has been revamped with a new-look team