VVIP chopper deal will be scrapped if any wrongdoing found: Antony

AugustaWestland

Antony stressed that tough action will be taken against the guilty, despite their stature.

"We are not bothered about who the companies are, how strong they are and how influential they are. But everything depends on the CBI inquiry. The moment we get a report from the CBI, whoever is found guilty, Indian or foreigners, we will take strongest action against them. They will have to pay the price for their lapses," he said.

Antony said the Indian government has been trying to get details from Italy for the last 10 months.

"After we saw reports, the Indian media reports of arrests and investigation going on in Italy, immediately we wrote to the Indian Ambassador in Italy to get the details from the Italian government and also the prosecutor who is conducting the inquiry," he said.

The External Affairs Ministry was also brought in the picture to seek a report from Italy and Britain.

"The second step (was) through the Ministry of External Affairs. Our government contacted the Government of Italy and Government of United Kingdom because AugustaWestland is a British company and major shareholder is British. MEA wrote to both the countries again," he said.

Both the countries were specifically asked about alleged involvement of some Indians in the scam.

"Second report came on involvement of some Indians and we again asked both the governments whether these allegations are true," he said.

Asked whether the scam will impact other deals under consideration with AugustaWestland and Finmeccanica, Antony said such an action will depend on the result of CBI inquiry.

"Let CBI inquire this. Everything depends on CBI inquiry on this...We have already given this issue to the CBI. Let us see the progress of CBI inquiry. At any stage of the inquiry, if anybody is guilty, anywhere in the deals, they will have to pay the price," he said.

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