India deliberately avoiding investigation in the chopper deal: Bhushan
Posted on: 06:44 AM IST Feb 19, 2013
New Delhi: As the CBI team leaves for Italy, senior Lawyer and Aam Aadmi Party member Prashant Bhushan told CNN-IBN that the Indian government was deliberately avoiding investigations in the tainted AgustaWestland chopper deal and that India can ask Italy and UK for information under the UN treaty against organised transnational crimes.
Showing the treaty papers, Bhushan said, "Here is a treaty, it's called the UN convention against transnational organised crime. This treaty has been signed by India and Italy. It obliges both countries not just to cooperate but to have joint investigations. It obliges Italy to reveal every information that India asks for including bank accounts of all the people. It obliges Italy to even freeze any bank accounts or assets that are found related to this international bribery transaction. It very clearly defines corruption of this kind as one of the situations where this kind of mutual assistance can be sought for. This is not being invoked by the Indian government."
Bhushan further added, "It's an elaborate farce. It's an attempt to put so much wool over the eyes of the people of this country."
Christian Michel is allegedly the most important link in the tainted AgustaWestland chopper deal. According to the Italian probe report, he was the beneficiary of 60 per cent of Rs 350 crore kickbacks, which means he got Rs 210 crore.
He was the one who, according to the Italian probe report, was the second track organised by Finmeccanica ex-CEO Giuseppe Orsi to ensure that the company gets the deal for VVIP choppers.
But while the Italians did manage to tap phones and record conversations of other accused middlemen like Guido Ralph Haschke and Carlo Gerosa, there is absolutely no information on Michel, other than what the accused themselves state.