HC Provides Cops Custody of Accused in ‘Operation Lotus’

HYDERABAD: Three men who have been detained in Telangana’s ”Operation Lotus” for allegedly trying to poach MLAs from the TRS party can be taken into custody the HC said on Saturday, dismissing a lower court order. The HC asked the police to question the accused by issuing them notices under Section 41 that permitted cops to arrest the accused without a warrant.

Ramachandra Bharati alias Satish Sharma, a priest from Faridabad in Haryana, Simhayaji, pontiff of Srimanatha Raja Peetham in Tirupati, and Nandakumar, owner of a restaurant, Deccan Pride in Hyderabad were released on Thursday after a lower court turned down a police plea seeking their custody. They were arrested on Wednesday night from a farmhouse near Hyderabad. According to preliminary investigations, the accused have been caught in the act of bribing four MLAs of KCR’s party to switch to the BJP- a set up the opponent has termed as Operation Lotus.

The incident surfaced after an MLA pilot Rohit Reddy who own the farmhouse- tipped off the police about the deal. An FIR was lodged based on the complaint that alleges Rs 250 crore was tabled for the attempt.

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