Andhra Govt orders inquiry into security lapse in transporting gold belonging to TTD

Tirupati: The state chief secretary L V Subrahmanyam ordered an inquiry into the security lapses in transporting the gold belonging to Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam (TTD).

The chief secretary deployed Manmohan Singh, the special secretary of the Revenue department as the head of the inquiry.

Subramanyam asked Singh to personally visit Tirupati immediately to find the facts and submit a report to him on or before April 23.

The incident took place a few days ago, when a huge amount of gold, being transported from Chennai to Tirupati, was caught during a search conducted by the Election Commission. Later it was found that the gold belongs to Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanam.

In a press release issued on Sunday, Subrahmanyam said that it was reported that proper procedures were not followed in the transportation of 1,381 kgs of gold belonging to TTD, which led to it getting seized by Static Surveillance Team of the Election Commission of India. It has given rise to several speculations over the gold belonging to TTD.

The central government had brought gold monetization scheme a few years ago. The TTD then deposited 1311kg gold in Punjab National Bank (PNB), at the rate of 1.75 per cent interest, under that monetization scheme. The three-year-long deposit matured on April 18, 2019.

So TTD wrote a letter to the bank seeking the gold back. Accordingly, the PNB bought 70 kg gold from Switzerland to pay as interest on the deposit. The 70 kg gold imported from Switzerland to Chennai was being shifted to Tirupati branch of PNB when it was caught by Static Surveillance Team of the Election Commission.