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No law broken in Sudan deal: Hindujas

July 04, 2005 16:53 IST

The United Kingdom-based Hindujas on Monday rebutted a BBC sting operation that claimed the billionaire brothers violated an international sanction on supply of 'military specification' vehicles to Sudan, saying the deal was struck by Ashok Leyland, an Indian company owned by the family.

"In agreeing to make supply of vehicles (including 'Stallion' off-road trucks) to Sudan, Ashok Leyland has not broken any law -- in India, there is no ban on trade with Sudan in any manner," a statement by Ashok Leyland said, adding that "no shipment has taken place against this agreement."

According to the Sunday Times, the BBC has alleged that the NRI businessmen Hindujas broke international sanctions that bar British citizens from entering into agreements to ship 'military specification' vehicles to Sudan.

The statement from Ashok Leyland said that in February 2005, the Indian commercial vehicle major had signed a cooperation agreement with GIAD, Sudan, for completely knocked down (CKD) supply of 50 Falcon buses, 50 Eagle mini-buses and 100 Stallion trucks.

It said these were to be assembled at the Khartoum facility of GIAD and to be used for 'civilian passenger transportation and humanitarian purposes', adding that the agreement also envisaged joint efforts to develop after-sales infrastructure and explore market expansion.

A spokesman of the Hindujas had yesterday said they would take legal action against the BBC if it tried to portray in the sting operation that the Group company Ashok Leyland was trying to sell 'military' vehicles to Sudan.

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