News

AgustaWestland deal: CBI examines AP Governor Narasimhan

PTI New Delhi | Updated on March 13, 2018

The CBI today recorded the statement of former Intelligence Bureau Director and Andhra Pradesh Governor E S L Narasimhan as witness in connection with allegations of bribery in the purchase of 12 VVIP helicopters from Ango-Italian firm AgustaWestland.

A team of CBI officials recorded the statement of Narasimhan at the Raj Bhavan in Hyderabad and questions related to change in service ceiling of the helicopters were put to him, the agency sources said.

The CBI sources said Narasimhan, along with then NSA M K Narayanan and then SPG Chief B V Wanchoo, attended the March 1, 2005 meeting where the decision to reduce the service ceiling — maximum height at which a helicopter can perform optimally — was taken, making AgustaWestland eligible for the deal.

Recently a CBI team had quizzed Narayanan and Wanchoo as witnesses for its probe into allegations of bribery of Rs 360 crore in the Rs 3,600-crore VVIP chopper deal with AgustaWestland.

The sources said the need to record the statements of Wanchoo and Narayanan was felt as both had participated in the meeting in 2005 that allowed key changes in the technical specifications of the chopper.

They said since Narasimhan was also present in the meeting, his statement was crucial to get additional inputs about the reasons for reducing the service ceiling.

CBI has alleged that reduction of the service ceiling allowed the UK-based firm to get into the fray as, otherwise, its helicopters were not even qualified for submission of bids.

CBI had registered a case against former IAF Chief S P Tyagi along with 13 others, including his cousins and European middlemen, in the case.

It was alleged that the former Air Chief reduced the flying ceiling of the helicopter so that AgustaWestland was included in the bids. Tyagi has refuted the allegations against him.

Published on July 09, 2014

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

null
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

You May Also Like