AgustaWestland case: Ex-IAF chief SP Tyagi grilled by CBI

Former IAF chief SP Tyagi was questioned by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on 2 May in connection with the probe it is conducting into the alleged corruption in the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland case. He arrived at the CBI headquarters at 10 am.

Former IAF Chief S P Tyagi. PTI

Former IAF Chief S P Tyagi. PTI

On Friday, the CBI had issued summons to Tyagi under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

Ex-IAF chief Tyagi is accused of having received cash from Guido Ralph Haschke and Carlo Gerosa in relation to the AgustaWestland chopper deal. Haschke and Gerosa are accused of being the middlemen in the deal.

Tyagi and the middlemen are among the 13 individuals named as accused in the CBI's FIR, which was later used by the ED for filing their separate case under criminal charges of money laundering.

Tyagi was accused in the AgustaWestland scam as he is said to have allowed helicopters to be purchased which did not meet the altitude requirement. A CBI report said that the IAF had vehemently opposed the change in altitude requirement, but had conceded once Tyagi was in the picture.

He is said to have passed on this information via middlemen to help AgustaWestland clinch the deal to supply twelve VVIP choppers to the IAF. The deal was scrapped in January 2013 and CBI began investigating the matter.

CBI has alleged that the reduction of the service ceiling — maximum height at which a helicopter can perform normally — allowed the UK-based firm to get into the fray as otherwise its helicopters were not even qualified for submission of bids. The CBI, which has received a copy of the Milan court order, has now prepared a fresh set of questionnaire to put to Tyagi.

"They have blamed me for corrupt practices in which I changed the height to assist AgustaWestland, although this decision was not against the public interest. But I was nevertheless being (called) corrupt," the former IAF chief said earlier.

The Supreme Court is to hear the AgustaWestland plea on 6 May.

With inputs from agencies

Updated Date: May 02, 2016 14:01 PM

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