Crime Bureau, ToliVelugu: It was before the bifurcation of Telugu states that Tollywood biggies selling the allotted lands were made a big issue. However, the same lands are now illegally occupied by the same ‘Pink’ bandwagon for the real estate business. While ToliVelugu has been publishing a series of articles with ground-breaking facts about the land kabzas in Hyderabad, the recent one came as shock with leading film studios is involved.
As TRS assumed office in Telangana, the industry was rife with reports that the party would resolve all the litigations on the industry lands while everyone contemplated Superstar Krishna to be the first victim. The Krishna family was accused of illegally occupying a piece of land for the construction of studios. TRS has been demanding since 2008 that the occupied lands should be taken back.
It can be recollected that KCR’s nephew Harish Rao filed the PIL in the High Court while the court dismissed the petition for approaching directly without submitting applications to the concerned departments. It was rumored that Krishna’s family used their influence to hold back these lands during YS Rajasekhar Reddy’s regime. While everyone speculated that lands to be in the government’s hands now, the story took an interesting turn with the entry of the Andhra release estate company.
After the film industry moved from Chennai to Hyderabad, the then government allotted 50 acres of land in Sheikh Peta in 1982 for industrial development. With the intention to support the industry’s growth, the then government sold the lands for Rs 8,500 per acre. Superstar Krishna has been allotted 9 acres and 20 guntas lands for Padmalaya Studios. Ramanayudu, Akkineni and NTR families were also granted lands under the clause that the lands should be used only for industrial purposes.
However, contrary to the clause Padmalaya Telefilms was founded by Krishna’s brother Adisesha Girirao and son Ramesh Babu who are working together with Zee Telefilms. With the deal ending in loss, Padmalaya Telefilms sold 5 acres and 20 guntas to cover up to Rs 60 crores of loss. The rest of the land was registered on Krishna’s son, daughter, and eight others’ names. The total value of the land that was illegally sold is now Rs 600 crore. However, Phoenix has already cleverly undertaken construction and sold flats for thousands of crores of rupees.
It can be noted that the then government found fault with selling lands to Zee upon which notices were also issued. The land sold to Zee was taken over by the YS government in 2007 while the revenue officials also erected a board mentioning the government’s land. With Galla Aruna Kumari who is the in-law of Krishna being a minister in YS cabinet, Padmalaya studios managed to get clearance. Secunderabad Revenue Officer made the mutation and the land seized by the government was returned. Post bifurcation, the litigated land was cleared and given to the Phoenix Company in gold platter.
What is the TRS government’s share in this settlement..? How many crores did Mahesh Babu and his sister Galla Padmavati make in the second phase of the land that could not be sold…? Who ran the whole process..? How did they manage to get clearance ..? Stay tuned to the ‘Phoenix Land Fixing’ series for the answers.