New Delhi, May 2 : CBI today examined former IAF chief SP Tyagi in connection with alleged corruption in the Rs 3,600-crore AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal. Tyagi arrived at CBI headquarters at around 10 AM for questioning. The Milan Court of Appeals — equivalent of an Indian high Court — has given details of how alleged bribes were paid by helicopter-maker Finmeccanica and AgustaWestland to Indian officials through middlemen to clinch the deal. (Read: AgustaWestland scam: CBI to quiz SP Tyagi today)Also Read - Bengal Post-poll Violence: Calcutta HC Orders CBI Probe Into Murder, Rape Cases; SIT For Other Offences
The order mentions the name of Tyagi at several points. CBI had registered a case against Tyagi along with 13 others including his cousins and European middlemen in the case. The allegation against the former Air Chief was that he had reduced flying ceiling of the helicopter from 6,000m to 4,500m (15,000ft)?so that AgustaWestland was included in the bids. Also Read - After Rebuke From CJI, CBI Arrests 5 For Alleged Defamatory Posts Against Judges
However, this decision was reportedly taken in consultation with the officials of SPG and the Prime Minister’s Office including then NSA M K Narayanan. 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. CBI which has received a copy of the Milan court order has now prepared a fresh set of questionnaire to put to Tyagi. Also Read - CBI Arrests Man Posing As NHAI Chairman, Duping Person of Rs 80 Lakh
Tyagi has denied allegations against him and has claimed that the decision to reduce the ceiling was taken by a group of senior officials. The agency had already questioned Tyagi but this session is the first after the Italian court order. His cousins have also been called by the agency.