We had talked about how the helicopter deal to the Italian company Finmeccanica had massive bribery issues and investigation was going on in Italy. It also came out in the investigations in Italy that the technical specifications were tweaked deliberately to give the contract specifically to this Italian company.
India allegedly tweaked the technical requirements in the tender to procure 12 VVIP helicopters for the Air Force to help Italian manufacturer AgustaWestland enter the race, an associate of the suspected middleman in the deal has alleged in his confession to Italian prosecutors.
In his testimony, the associate of Guido Haschke said the AW 101 chopper did not qualify initially as the requirements were being drawn by India in 2006. They were allegedly tweaked after Haschke struck a deal with the Italian company.
Unfortunately, no word is available in the Indian media on any corresponding investigation in India. How come a company actually managed to tweak the technical specifications of the Government tenders and take away the contract, without any eyebrows raised!
Well, now the Head of the Company Finmeccanica, has been arrested in this case.
The head of Italian defence group Finmeccanica was arrested on Tuesday in a corruption probe centred on the sale of helicopters to the Indian government, a judicial source said. Earlier a report on the online version of Corriere della Sera newspaper said Finmeccanica chief executive and chairman Giuseppe Orsi had been arrested for bribes allegedly paid to secure the sale of 12 helicopters to India.
So the obvious question is WHAT THE HECK is India doing in this regard??? If the guy in the other country is behind the bars because he paid bribes and tinkered with Government Tenders; then someone on the Indian side WOULD have been the beneficiary. Right? If there was no one to receive the money and do the quid pro quo here, then why was the guy in Italy arrested?? New York Times has also raised this issue of the corresponding Indian investigation.
According to the New York Times, ‘the first helicopters, for use by India’s political leaders, were due to be delivered by December 2012 after a €560 million, or $750 million, contract was awarded in 2010.’
It’s not clear if India has started an investigation into the allegations. The Times said Italy hasn’t disclosed details of the corruption allegations to Indian authorities.
We are pretending as if this was a One-side bribe – someone paid (hence is a criminal), but no one received (so why was the payer a criminal?)!
This news is everywhere. Doubt that the Indian media didn’t get to know about this. Why isn’t this becoming bigger than this? Why isn’t it big enough to be noticed?