YSR's Death

On 27 January, 2010, it was reported that CBI sleuths reportedly seized certain documents from the office of the AP Aviation Corporation Limited, investigators have found several lapses in the maintenance of the Bell 430 helicopter that killed former chief minister Late Y S Rajasekhara Reddy on September 2.

It is learnt that the helicopter was not airworthy, not only at the time Rajasekhara Reddy flew in but also earlier.

``We have seized many documents which indicate the casual attitude of the maintenance staff. Simultaneously some records indicate that the higher-ups of APACL have ignored the basic guidelines,’’ CBI sources said.

The CBI which reportedly seized several documents from the APACL office at Begumpet is likely to further intensify their searches in the coming days.

However, the CBI is still awaiting the transcripts of Cockpit Voice Recorder of the helicopter.

``Investigation so far have pointed out that the chopper was not airworthy.

It will take some more time before we come to any conclusion. Going by the documents seized so far, indications are that some where APACL is also at fault,’’ the source said adding that a clear picture will emerge shortly.

Already a committee probing the incident had pointed out the chopper was not airworthy.

On January 9, 2010, R.K. Tyagi, chairman of the four-member inquiry committee (constituted to probe the chopper crash that killed late chief minister Y.S. Rajasekhar Reddy), met senior civil aviation ministry officials before submitting the inquiry report. The committee, will submit its report soon to the government.

The PTI reported on 8 January, 2010 that the Andhra Pradesh police have filed a case against a Telugu news channel over a report alleging foul play by the Ambani brothers Mukesh and Anil in the death of former chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy.

The police have already begun a probe and are collecting evidence, including video tapes of the news footage beamed by TV5 that alleged that the Ambani brothers were behind the helicopter crash in which Reddy was killed on September 2, last year.

The report on aired at night had triggered an attack by Reddy's supporters on business outlets of companies led by Mukesh and Anil, and the two groups separately accused each other of fuelling the allegations.

Mukesh-led Reliance Industries has denied the allegations and called them 'malicious' and 'motivated' and said that it was the 'dirty handiwork of our business rivals in cahoots with TV5.'

The Anil Ambani-led Reliance group said: "A malicious and criminal disinformation campaign has been engaged into by our corporate rivals leading to substantial loss and damage to our several offices and businesses of Reliance ADA Group in Andhra Pradesh."

"We are shocked to see our corporate rivals stooping down to new levels of desperation by engaging in such imaginative and baseless rumour-mongering."

According to a senior police official, a case has been registered suo motu against the Telugu news channel TV5.

Andhra Pradesh DGP R R Girish Kumar termed the attacks on Reliance outlets as unfortunate and warned that they will deal tough with arsonists.

"We are confident that the authorities will take appropriate action against those corporate elements engaging in such criminal acts of disinformation," the Anil Ambani group said in a statement.

Jubilee Hills police said the case was registered on the grounds of inciting ill-feeling among a section of people under Sections 153 (A) and 505 (2) of IPC, and Section 16 of Cable Network Regulation Act.

"We are collecting the tapes of the video footage shown by the channel and same will be sent for forensic examination to AP State Forensic Laboratory," a senior police officer said.

Later most of the Reliance outlets and establishments were closed on in Hyderabad and across the state on advice by the state police.

Earlier, it was reported that Y S Rajasekhar Reddy’s Accident was a Preplanned murder. The News posted in Exiled E Magazine on September 3rd 2009.

On 2 September 2009, a helicopter carrying Reddy went missing in the Nallamala forest area. On the morning of 3 September 2009, media agencies reported that the helicopter had been found crashed on top of Rudrakonda Hill, 40 nautical miles from Kurnool.

Reddy's Bell 430 helicopter went missing on Wednesday, 2 September 2009 at 9:35 am. Begumpet and Shamshabad Air Traffic controllers lost contact with the aircraft at 9:02 am while it was passing through the dense Nallamala forest area. The Chief Secretary of Andhra Pradesh, P. Ramakanth Reddy, said that inclement weather had forced the helicopter off-course. Although the sparsely populated forest area is considered to be stronghold of the outlawed Naxal communist insurgents, the National Security Advisor of India ruled out the possibility of the Naxals bringing down the helicopter.

The state government of Andhra Pradesh and the Government of India launched one of the largest search and rescue operations in the history of the country. The state's security officials mentioned that bad weather was hindering the search and rescue efforts.

The Home Ministry of India dispatched 5000 CRPF soldiers for the operation while the Defence Ministry of India ordered the Indian Air Force to comb the area using low altitude planes and the Sukhoi-30MKI equipped with thermal imaging systems. In addition, police personnel from six districts were involved in the ground search. Andhra Pradesh's anti-Naxal forces were also deployed in the area, owing to their familiarity with the jungle terrain there. Local tribal residents from this part of the state assisted with the search mission. Patrol parties also combed the Krishna river for the remains of the helicopter. ISRO's RISAT-2 satellite was also deployed to search the area, but the 41 high-resolution images of the area were unable to trace the helicopter.

The wreckage of the helicopter was finally spotted by an IAF Dhruv helicopter more than 24 hours after contact was lost with Reddy's Bell 430 helicopter. The Indian Prime Minister's Office confirmed the helicopter's crash on the morning of 3 September and the death of all aboard, including Reddy, his special secretary P. Subrahmanyam, chief security officer A. S. C. Wesley, Group Captain S. K. Bhatia and Captain M. S. Reddy.

The Director General of Police said that the bodies of Reddy and others were charred beyond recognition and had to be identified on the basis of clothing. The autopsy of all the bodies was carried out at Kurnool Medical College.

Reddy's body was buried on 4 September at Idupulapai in Kadapa district with full state honors in accordance with Christian rites.

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister K Rosaiah had said that if there was a conspiracy behind the death of former chief minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy in a helicopter crash, it needs to be uncovered. His remarks assumed significance in the backdrop of a fresh controversy around the September 2 crash of helicopter in Kurnool district in which the then Chief Minister and four others were killed. The controversy erupted with a Telugu Daily Saakshi, owned by YSR's son YS Jaganmohan Reddy carrying reports that the helicopter crash was result of a conspiracy. The report also claimed that before his death YSR had also expressed fear for his life.

The controversy has also taken a political color with some senior Congress leaders questioning why the state Home Minister Sabita Indra Reddy and Public Security Committee chairman KVP Ramachandra Rao did not resign owing the moral responsibilty for the crash and Reddy's death.

Rosaiah pointed out that two types of inquiry were on and the reports were awaited. Crime Branch CID had launched its investigations and later the case was handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation.

He said from the technical point of view the Director General of Civil Aviation was also conducting its own inquiry. He also referred to the statement of All India Congress Committee spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi in New Delhi that the probe was on from every aspect.

Some senior police officials were transferred after the crash, those in higher positions did not resign. Former home minister Jana Reddy also demanded a larger probe in to the matter as the issues comes under both the state and the central government. Responding to the demands for her resignation, Home Minister Sabita Indra Reddy told the media that after losing a great leader like YS Rajasekhara Reddy, posts did not matter to her. "Facts should come out. That is why several inquiries have been ordered. We want to find out if any body was responsible and what were the causes for the crash. The government will take action after getting the reports".

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