ibnlive » India

Mar 06, 2013 at 04:37pm IST

Chopper deal: CBI questions Tyagi brothers, IAF Ex-Chief Tyagi to be grilled tomorrow

New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Wednesday questioned cousins of former Air Chief SP Tyagi in connection with alleged kickbacks in Rs 4,000 crore VVIP helicopter deal. Former Air Marshal SP Tyagi is likely to join investigations on Thursday. Julie and Docsa Tyagi are at the CBI headquarters for interrogation.

The CBI had on Tuesday questioned Aeromatrix CEO Pravin Bakshi, former union minister Santosh Bagrodia and lawyer Gautam Khaitan in connection with the case. The investigative agency had filed a Preliminary Enquiry against 12 people last week.

CBI sources said Julie and Docsa Tyagi have been quizzed on their alleged association with European middlemen Carlo Gerosa and Guido Haschkhe who have been accused by the Italian investigators for payment of illegal gratification to swing the deal in favour of AgustaWestland.

The sources said agency has already questioned executives of Indian arms of Aeromatrix and IDS Infotech - companies through which alleged bribe was routed from Mauritius and Tunisia in the garb of payments for engineering contracts. In his probe report, the Italian prosecutor had said that Gerosa and Haschkhe had close contacts with former Air Chief's family, particularly his three cousins - Julie, Docsa and Sandeep.

It had claimed that Haschkhe and Gerosa, through the Tyagi brothers, managed to change the tender details, modifying the 'operational ceiling' from 18,000 feet to 15,000 feet altitude, thus making AgustaWestland eligible to take part in the tender process. The report also said that the duo managed to introduce a comparative flight trial with non-functional engine, thus facilitating AgustaWestland helicopters, the only ones which had three engines, swinging the deal in its favour.

The CEOs of the two Italian companies, arrested by local authorities, also paid the middlemen through a consultancy contract between AgustaWestland and Gordian Services Sarl an amount of 400,000 Euros (about Rs 2.8 crore) of which 100,000 Euros (Rs 72 lakh) were paid cash to the Tyagi brothers (Julie, Docsa and Sandeep), the report said. The former Air Chief and his three cousins have denied the allegations.

With Additional Inputs from PTI