Thursday, May 30, 2024

CBI files charge sheet in AgustaWestland scam; Michel among 15 accused

The CBI has filed a charge sheet named 15 accused including Christian James Michel in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper scam.

The charge sheet though doesn’t include the name of former CAG Shashi Kant Sharma as ministry of defence is yet to give sanction for the same, as per RepublicWorld.

The scam refers to the deal for the procurement of VVIP helicopters for top-ranking politicians in India. It’s alleged that bribes were paid to middlemen, journalists and even politicians.

The Congress-led UPA government had signed the contract in 2010 worth Rs 3,600 crores to procure 12 AgustaWestland helicopters.

The scam came to light in early 2013.

Michel is said to be the key middleman facilitating the deal. CBI had earlier alleged that Michel had received a bribe of 42.27 million euros for the same and the bribes were routed through his companies.

Michel was extradited to India from UAE in 2018.

It was also alleged that the then chief of Indian Air Force SP Tyagi had a role to play in the buying of AgustaWestland helicopters for which he was paid bribe, it was alleged.

The scam first came to light when CEO of AgustaWestland Bruno Spagnolini was arrested in Italy on charges the company bribed middlemen to secure the deal with the Indian Air Forces.

The deal was subsequently cancelled by 2014 by the government.

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