Missing file case: IAF panel gives clean chit to officials

An internal probe committee of the Indian Air Force is understood to have given a clean chit to its officials in the case involving a missing `secret file` which was found at a roadside here.

Updated: Jan 17, 2011, 15:11 PM IST

New Delhi: An internal probe committee of the Indian Air Force is understood to have given a clean chit to its officials in the case involving a missing `secret file` which was found at a roadside here.

The Court of Inquiry (CoI) report into the incident was submitted to the Defence Ministry Monday and is believed to have given a clean chit to IAF officials in the case, sources
said here.

The file was related to the offsets proposal of the over USD 11 billion 126 Medium-Multi-role Combat Aircraft (M-MRCA) acquisition, which is at a critical stage as the IAF has submitted its final report after carrying out two year-long extensive field trials.
After the file was recovered from a roadside in Khelgaon area, two separate probes were ordered into the incident by both the Defence Ministry and the IAF.

After an initial probe into the incident, two senior IAS officers had come under the scanner as the file was issued in the name of a director-level official and was recovered outside the Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL) guest-house in Khelgaon here, where an additional secretary-rank official was residing for the last three-four months.
Last week, Defence Minister A K Antony had said that the Ministry would take further action into the case after receiving the IAF report.

Earlier, downplaying the incident, Air Chief Marshal P V Naik had said the file didn`t have any "earth-shaking" content and it hardly had anything to do peripherally with the M-MRCA and was not going to affect the tender.

PTI