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Updated: February 26, 2013 08:19 IST

CBI names Tyagi, cousins in preliminary enquiry

Devesh K. Pandey
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The report names the three Tyagi brothers — Julie, Docsa and Sandeep, cousins of the former Indian Air Force chief S. P. Tyagi (in picture) — as intermediaries in corruption. File photo
The report names the three Tyagi brothers — Julie, Docsa and Sandeep, cousins of the former Indian Air Force chief S. P. Tyagi (in picture) — as intermediaries in corruption. File photo

Seven others too figure in preliminary enquiry on chopper deal

The Central Bureau of Investigation on Monday registered a preliminary enquiry against 11 persons, including the former IAF Chief, Air Chief Marshal S.P. Tyagi, and his cousins, besides four companies, in connection with the alleged payment of kickbacks by Italian firm AgustaWestland through middlemen in India to bag the Rs. 3,600-crore deal for supply of 12 VVIP helicopters.

The PE, instituted based on documents procured by the CBI from Italy, mentions the names of the former IAF chief’s cousins Julie, Docsa and Sandeep Tyagi.

Their names had cropped up during a probe by the Italian agencies. The former IAF chief has already denied his role in the matter.

According to the PE, the agency suspects that Finmeccanica, parent company of AgustaWestland, paid a commission to European intermediaries, including Christian Michel, through whom payments in instalments were made to Indian nationals to ensure that the contract for supply of choppers was awarded to the company.

The bribe money was transferred allegedly through two Indian companies IDS Infotech and Aeromatrix, which have been named in the PE, besides Finmeccanica and AgustaWestland.

The former Finmeccanica head, Giuseppe Orsi, and the former AgustaWestland Chief Executive Officer, Bruno Spagnolini, have also been named.

The Italian investigation report mentions that money was given on a monthly basis through front companies allegedly in the garb of software development contracts. According to Italian agencies, payments running into several million euros were made by AgustaWestland between 2007 and 2012 to IDS Tunisia and the money was routed to its Indian arm against alleged fake bills.

The CBI will also probe the role of Aeromatrix, whose then directors Guido Ralph Haschke and Ferdinando Carlo Valentino Gerosa have been mentioned in the PE as suspected middlemen. Mr. Haschke also purportedly worked as consultant for Finmeccanica.

Besides, the CBI will examine the role of Indian lawyer Gautam Khaitan, who was earlier a director with Aeromatrix, and its CEO Praveen Bakshi during the enquiry. Those named have denied their role in the chopper deal. “As and when necessary, we may examine those named in the PE,” said an official.

The Chief of the alleged bribe giving company has been arrested by the Italian government.But in India the situation is tricky. The case against the company is that it paid bribes through intermediaries to the decision makers of the purchaser, who in this case have to be the those who can make decisions on behalf of Government of India. These decision makers in the present case can be any one or a group of officials starting from the Defence Minister and going down to much lower levels in the military and administrative branches of the Defence Ministry. In the fitness of things therefore either the PMs Office or the Cabinet Secretariat and not the Defence Ministry should be ordering enquiries and suprevising investigations.

from:  K.Vijayakumar
Posted on: Feb 27, 2013 at 20:45 IST

What happened to Abhishek Varma, political manager to CEO Orsi, in India who is in Tihar
Jail? Politicians dealt or managed by him will ensure that he is not questioned in this deal as
he may spill the beans affecting the bribe takers in the political arena as Verma knew all the

from:  MvjRao
Posted on: Feb 26, 2013 at 11:17 IST

It is curious that why the so called Political consultant to Orsi, arrested CEO of the Italian firm, Ahishek Verma was not named in the proposed enquiry. It may be perhaps due to the fear that he might spill the beans against the politicians who are a part of the kick back recepient-team in India and that is why he is being offered five star facilities in Tihar Jail and is not being even questioned by CBI agencies.

from:  MVJRao
Posted on: Feb 26, 2013 at 07:52 IST

A big bribe of Euro 51m has been paid. But messenger boys who got Euro
100,000 are being named and shamed.

from:  James Gurung
Posted on: Feb 26, 2013 at 06:02 IST

In future the Defence Ministry officials themselves must finalise
all purchases so that if any question of bribe arises,it would be easy to pinpoint the culprit who cannot then deny his role.No
ex-serviceman above a particular rank should be allowed any where within 10 miles of the office of the Defence Ministry to avoid any influence being brought to bear.

from:  Raj Kumar
Posted on: Feb 26, 2013 at 04:28 IST

The former Air Chief,his cousins and the directors of the Indian companies named would be fools if they did not deny their roles. This superfluous statement need not have been mentioned.Also it must be within the knowledge of the Defence Ministry that these deals for purchase of expensive items for the forces have been brokered by companies registered in India which means Indians are involved as middlemen.Then why blame them considering the fact that
middlemen are barred for defence purchases.The blame squarely rests on the Ministry.

from:  Raj Kumar
Posted on: Feb 26, 2013 at 04:23 IST

THE USUAL RIG MA ROLE CIRCUS: . Name the suspect, raid his house, make a charge sheet. etc etc...then let the corrupted, institutionalized and infamous INDIAN TIME DELAY system take the case via the legal route to vanish into oblivion...say within 25 years. - Eg: Bofors.etc etc. ---- ( Meanwhile, scores of investigation teams will do their overseas holiday jaunts , eating tax payers money and produce zero results ).

from:  Balan
Posted on: Feb 26, 2013 at 03:58 IST

Now its time to book people who certificated Tyagi as honest person, he is none other than central minister Mr. Pallam Raju should be booked under the law for his misutilize his office to give such statements in Press.

from:  kumar
Posted on: Feb 26, 2013 at 03:39 IST

Will Tyagi be Court-martialled and executed for treason? No, probably
will spend his time in Europe and/or USA and later write a best-seller
about how he "feels bad" for the corruption that he arranged and
participated in....

from:  Rakesh
Posted on: Feb 26, 2013 at 02:46 IST

It is very disheartening to hear the name of former IAF chief in the scandal.

from:  Parameshwar
Posted on: Feb 25, 2013 at 23:55 IST

What an Unholy Trinity Plus! Thyagis Indeed!

from:  Soundararajan Srinivasa
Posted on: Feb 25, 2013 at 23:39 IST

Dear Mr.Editor,
We have become stale and tired of seeing in your columns only
corruption ridden deals of the government besides news that give no
consolation and happiness about our country. Corruption, dishonesty
and nepotism only rule our country now and it looks more than certain
that we will see no more of those days of Forties and Fifties of the
last century when people gave what the country needed. I open the
pages of your 'On-Line' edition daily with my heart thumping fast as
to what sad stories I would be seeing that day . Can you at least post
one good news about our country daily to keep our morale from sagging?

from:  T.Sathyamurthi
Posted on: Feb 25, 2013 at 23:05 IST

It all started with the arrest of the CEO of Finmechanica,for the
alleged bribes received in the chopper deal,that caused furore
throughout the nation and exposed our defence ministry which had been
sitting on the files for months together. Pushed to the corner,the
UPA government,had no option except to send our intelligence wing to
Italy,which initially was hesitant. The inquisitive media and our CBI
deserve a pat for ferreting out relevant records from Italy which show
accusing fingers at Tyagi,two of his relatives and at the other two.
That the ex-army chief comes under scanner,is a blot on our defence
wing as it is the first ever occasion in our history, that
speculations are rife over the questionable role of uno numero in the
Army and his relatives in this scam. Italy unlike India,did not buy
time to act on the charges of bribe and we had to follow suit. Though
we were not on our marks for the race when the gun was fired, we also
ran the race only to end up last.

from:  C.Chandrasekaran
Posted on: Feb 25, 2013 at 21:59 IST

It is surprising that CBI did not book Abhishek Verma who is supposed to be the Political consultant for Orsi, arrested CEO of the Italian company for the sale of copters to India. As a political consultant, he may spill the beans of all the politicians involved which is perhaps why he is being protected in Tihar Jail with royal facilities. Here itself puppet nature of CBI is becoming evident as it is supposed to protect the vested interests of the most powerful in the government.

from:  MVJRao
Posted on: Feb 25, 2013 at 20:56 IST
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