Kalluri Gangadhar Reddy, a witness in the sensational murder case of former Andhra Pradesh minister Y. S. Vivekananda Reddy, died under suspicious circumstances in Anantapur district.
The 49-year-old died in sleep at his house in Yadiki village on the intervening night of Wednesday and Thursday, the family members informed the police.
The police rushed there and collected the clues from the house and surroundings. The body was subsequently shifted to Tadipatri for autopsy.
Police registered the case of death under suspicious circumstances and took up investigation.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is probing Vivekananda’s murder, had questioned Gangadhar Reddy. The agency had grilled him thrice after calling him to Kadapa.
Gangadhar Reddy was the follower of Devireddy Shankar Reddy, a close associate of Kadapa MP Y. S. Avinash Reddy and an accused in the murder case. He had twice met Anantapur Superintendent of Police to complain that he was facing threat to his life and demand security.
In November last year, he had complained to Anantapur district SP that the CBI was pressuring him to give a statement in the court saying that Vivekananda Reddy’s nephew and Kadapa MP Avinash Reddy and another accused Gangi Reddy offered to pay him Rs 10 crore if he admit that he had committed the murder.
Gangadhar Reddy was a rowdy sheeter in Pulivendula town of Kadapa district and was bounded over from the district 10 years ago. He had shifted to Yadiki in Anantapur district and settled down there.
As a key follower of Devireddy Shankar Reddy, he was involved in various criminal cases. These include a double murder case in 2007.
Vivekananda Reddy, uncle of Chief Minister Y. S. Jagan Mohan Reddy, was found murdered at his residence in Kadapa on March 15, 2019, a few days before the election.
The 68-year-old former state minister and former MP was alone at his house when unidentified persons barged in and killed him. He was killed hours before he was to launch YSR Congress Party’s election campaign in Kadapa.
Though three Special Investigation Teams (SITs) conducted the probe they failed to solve the mystery.
The CBI took over the investigation into the case in 2020 on the direction of Andhra Pradesh High Court while hearing a petition of Vivekananda Reddy’s daughter Sunita, who raised suspicion about some relatives.
The CBI filed a charge sheet in the murder case on October 26, 2021 and followed it up with a supplementary charge sheet on January 31, 2022