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Chopper scam: Def min to question Haschke on politicians, bureaucrats

December 10, 2013 00:29 IST

With references to politicians and bureaucrats coming up in the chopper scam trial in Italy, the Defence Ministry is expected to seek clarifications on the issue from alleged middleman Guido Haschke during the next hearing of the case there.

The references to initials of politicians and designations of bureaucrats have come up as the Italian prosecutors presented a memo prepared by the middlemen in which a 'draft budget' for provision of 30 million Euros has been made to swing the deal allegedly in favour of AgustaWestland.

During the next hearing on December 13, "our lawyer is expected to be seeking further clarifications from Hashcke on the issue", sources said in New Delhi.

In the last hearing on December 6, the Indian side did not ask any questions to Haschke after the opportunity was provided in a court in Milan. The Indian lawyer has reserved the right to question him during the next hearing.

According to reports from Italy, Haschke has claimed that EUR 6 million were paid to Air Force officials and EUR 8.4 million to the bureaucracy.

In the draft budget, references have also been made to 'AP' and "FAM' in the list under the provision for politicians.

The bureaucracy list includes references to abbreviations "DS", "JS AIR", "AFA", "DG Acquisition". But they have not been explained in detail.

In previous hearings, Haschke had said that he had met former IAF chief S P Tyagi six to seven times while recounting his role in the scandal.

He said there was a plan to divide a commission of 7 per cent of the worth of the deal with the three Tyagi brothers, cousins of then Air chief S P Tyagi.

Haschke also recounted the various meetings at multiple locations between him and his accomplices in the whole episode in Rome and Dubai.

The middleman, who was recently arrested by Italian authorities after being extradited by Swiss officials, had said that he had kept aside seven per cent of the deal as his share and for paying the three Tyagi cousins.

He said the 50 per cent of the total money was to be paid to the other middleman Christian Michel and the money to be paid was to be routed through the engineering services contract as part of the deal.

The Defence Ministry is expected to scrap the deal for 12 VVIP choppers after it found that the Anglo-Italian firm violated the pre-contract integrity pact with India.

AgustaWestland and the Tyagi brothers have denied any wrongdoing in the deal worth Rs 3,600 crore.


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