Gautam Khaitan admits to setting up firm through which Agusta bribe money was routed: Sources

The CBI Wednesday questioned former IAF Chief S P Tyagi for the third consecutive day today besides quizzing advocate and former board member of Aeromatrix Gautam Khaitan in connection with the controversial Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland chopper deal.

PTI| Last Updated: May 04, 2016, 21:38 PM IST
Gautam Khaitan admits to setting up firm through which Agusta bribe money was routed: Sources

New Delhi: The CBI Wednesday questioned former IAF Chief S P Tyagi for the third consecutive day today besides quizzing advocate and former board member of Aeromatrix Gautam Khaitan in connection with the controversial Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland chopper deal.

The agency has called the then Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Plans) N V Tyagi to be examined in connection with the alleged irregularities in the deal, CBI sources said.

The sources said N V Tyagi was part of a team of senior officials who were involved in the deliberations to reduce the specifications of the helicopters for the VVIPs.

They also claimed that Khaitan during his questioning admitted setting up IDS Tunisia.

IDS Tunisia is a subsidiary of IDS India. The company was one among the many through which the alleged bribe was routed by the middlemen from Agusta Westland to other countries, the sources said.

CBI officials, not willing to be on record, claimed that Khaitan only admitted setting up the company and not any alleged transfers of funds through it.

The agency sources said S P Tyagi has not been called tomorrow for questioning.

Khaitan, who is an advocate and a former Board member of company Aeromatrix which was allegedly used to route bribe amount, is named in the CBI FIR as one of the accused.

The focus of the questioning was his alleged links with Italian middlemen-- Carlo Gerosa and Guido Haschkhe, the sources said.

CBI had registered a case against Tyagi along with 13 others including his cousins and European middlemen.

The allegation against the former Air Chief was that he reduced flying ceiling of the helicopter from 6,000m to 4,500m (15,000ft) which put AgustaWestland helicopters in the race for the deal without which its choppers were not even qualified for submission of bids.

Tyagi has denied allegations against him and said the change of specifications, which brought AgustaWestland into contention, was a collective decision in which senior officers of Indian Air Force, SPG and other departments were involved.