Italian firm denies irregularity in VVIP chopper deal

Three days after the Defence Ministry ordered a probe Italian firm Finmeccanica today said its AgustaWestland was "not involved in any irregularity"

Written by Agencies | New Delhi | Published:February 27, 2012 7:11 pm

Three days after the Defence Ministry ordered a probe to find out if there was any corruption in the VVIP chopper deal,Italian firm Finmeccanica today said its subsidiary AgustaWestland was “not involved in any irregularity” in the Indian tender.

Defence Minister A K Antony had ordered a probe on Friday to find out if there were any instances of corruption in the Rs 3,500-crore deal to procure 12 helicopters for VVIPs from European defence firm AgustaWestland. “Finmeccanica declares that AgustaWestland is not involved in any irregularity concerning the supply of helicopters in India. No notice related to the purported investigations has been served to companies and officers of the Group neither in Italy,nor in India,” the Italian company said in a statement.

In the statement issued by the company it also said “companies of the Group have adopted organizations and ethical codes in line with regulations and best practices aimed at preventing and banning any conduct not responding to proper management standards.”

The Defence Ministry had ordered the probe after reports in Italian daily ‘La Repubblica’ suggested prosecutors in that country have already started probing allegations of corruption in the multi-millon dollar deal.

They say Italian Attorney General’s office began the probe last year into the dealings by Finmeccanica and it has been widened to include the Rs 3,546-crore contract with

India.

India had signed a contract worth Rs 3,546.17 crore in February,2010,to procure 12 of these helicopters,of which eight would be for VVIP transportation.

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