Thursday, March 24, 2011

Batcha's driver fled with Rs 6 crore, wife tells cops

CHENNAI: Sadiq Batcha's driver had escaped with Rs 6 crore from his car last August, his widow Reha Banu told cops investigating the suicide of A Raja's aide on Wednesday, according to police sources. 

Police, questioning several people as part of the probe into the death of Batcha, quoted Reha Banu as saying that Batcha, who was found dead on March 16, was upset after his driver disappeared with the money but preferred not to file a police complaint. 

The investigation has revealed that Batcha spoke to a friend called Subbudu (Subramanian) 40 times on the day before he allegedly took his life. Subramanian is a partner in Sadiq Real Estate Agency based in Perambalur, Raja's hometown. 

A Mylapore police district officer said: "We have been instructed not to probe the 2G spectrum case. We have been told to only probe Batcha's suicide." 

Reha Banu appeared upset during the questioning, police said. They also quoted her as saying that the money he had dreamt of making claimed his life. "Driver Salim was very loyal initially and Batcha took him along on business trips. But when Batcha left his briefcase containing Rs 6 crore in his car and came home, Salim took it and never returned. I insisted that he file a police complaint but Batcha ignored it as the driver belonged to his hometown Lebbai Kudi Kadu near Perambalur," Reha Banu was quoted as saying by the police. 

Another police officer, assigned to look into Batcha's mobile call records, said, "Batcha spoke to his close friend Subramanian Subbudu at least 40 times on March 15, a day before his suicide. He even mentioned Subbudu in his suicide note, which was found in his room on March 16." 

Subramanian had also been questioned by the CBI in connection with the 2G spectrum scam case. "Subramanian and Batcha jointly started Sadiq Real Estate Agency on Elambalur Road in Perambalur. Batcha later moved to Chennai and started Green House Promoters and made Raja's wife and a few others directors of the company," the officer said.

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