VVIP chopper deal probe: Ex-IAF Chief Tyagi was bribed to swing deal

AgustaWestland

Julie Tyagi is the Indian businessman who had been named in October as a relative of S P Tyagi.

"They promised and managed to pay, through brothers Julie Tyagi, Docsa Tyagi and Sandeep Tyagi, a certain amount of money, not yet quantified, to Air Chief Marshal Shashi Tyagi, Chief of Staff in the Indian Air Force from 2004 to 2007 - a public officer or anyway in charge of functions and activities equivalent to those of a public officer in India - to perform and for having performed a deed against his office duties," the report says.

The report also named Britain-based consultant Christian Michel as the other major middleman in the deal. It alleges that Michel was paid a "total amount of about 30 million euros, partly destined to support the corrupt activity meant to bag the order and partly to implement the contract".

The report discusses the Indian contract in detail and alleges that technical requirements were tweaked to ensure that the Italian chopper qualifies. As first reported by The Indian Express, the service ceiling requirements for the contract were changed by the Defence ministry before the tenders were issued in 2006, giving AgustaWestland a chance to qualify.

"Haschke and Gerosa, through the Tyagi brothers, in turn through their cousin Shashi Tyagi managed first to change the tender details, in a favourable way to AgustaWestland, modifying the 'operational ceiling' from 18,000 ft to 15,000 ft of altitude, thus allowing AgustaWestland (which otherwise could not have even submitted an offer) to take part in the tender," the report says.

It alleges that the flight trials were also tweaked. The trials were conducted after Tyagi retired in 2007.

"Then they managed to introduce a comparative flight trial with non-functional engine, thus facilitating AgustaWestland helicopters, the only ones which had three engines. In this way, they managed to get the contract to AgustaWestland," the report says.

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