The defence ministry on Thursday issued a second notice to Italian firm Finmeccanica, seeking an explanation into its relationships with two Chandigarh-based companies that investigators suspect served as fronts to funnel bribes to India to win the Rs. 3,670-crore VVIP chopper deal.
The notice gives the arms giant a week to explain its relationship with Aeromatrix and IDS Infotech, IT firms that were used to pay kickbacks worth Rs. 370 crore to middlemen and members of former air chief SP Tyagi's family, according to Italian prosecutors.
Lawyer quizzed by CBI
The CBI on Thursday examined lawyer Gautam Khaitan, a former member of the board of Aeromatrix.
According to a CBI source, Khaitan, who reached the CBI headquarters at around 10 am and was examined for around eight hours, was asked if he had known about the helicopters deal and about his links with two middlemen- Carlo Gerosa and Ralph Guido- that the Italian firm had employed to swing the deal in its favour, according to an agency source.
He was also quizzed about his links, if any, with former air force chief SP Tyagi and his three cousins, who were also quizzed by the agency on Wednesday.