Six senior Airports Authority of India officials have been suspended after a preliminary CBI probe found them allegedly favouring a private firm while awarding ground handling service contracts at some airports.
Civil aviation minister Ajit Singh has ordered immediate suspension and initiation of major penalty proceedings against AAI executive director(Commercial) LL Krishnan, DGM finance RL Saran, Additional GM (Commercial) S Basu, DGM (Operations) Arun Mehan, DGM (Operations) PK Chadha and GM Ravi Verma, a ministry statement said.
A CBI inquiry had found them allegedly involved in committing irregularities and favouring a particular company in awarding ground handling services contracts at Chennai, Kolkata and other airports.
The minister has also ordered filing of FIR against Prem Bajaj, MD of Bhadra International India Ltd, retired AAI ED (Commercial) RV Narayanan, retired AAI ED (finance) AK Dubey and others for manipulating, forgery, criminal breach of trust, criminal conspiracy and corruption, the statement said.
The AAI officers had allegedly made certain deviations from the commercial manual in the Notice Inviting Tender (NIT) while awarding contract for ground handling services at Chennai and Kolkata airports so that Bhadra International India Ltd was benefited, the CBI probe found.
The officials had deliberately incorporated the term "tie-up" arrangement in the eligibility criteria as stipulated in the NIT to make Bhadra International India Ltd eligible in joint venture technical agreement with Novia International Consulting APS for participating in the bid process.