On February 13, 2013, the Indian Defense Minister AK Anthony asserted that nobody will be spared if they were found guilty at any stage during the CBI inquiry into the recent chopper scam. An inquiry is being conducted into the allegations of bribery in regards to the Rs. 3,700 crore VVIP chopper deal that took place between the Indian government and an Italian company.
Antony, at a press conference said, “Everything depends on CBI inquiry. Whoever is found guilty at any stage of inquiry, we will take strongest possible action. Nobody will be spared’’. The government, on the basis of a preliminary inquiry, had blacklisted around six defense firms.
Agusta Westland, which is a subsidiary of the Italian defense and aerospace giant Finmeccanica said that all options between the countries are still currently open. Out of the 12 choppers, the Indian Air Force has received 3 so far and the remaining 9 are scheduled to be delivered within a span of one year.
Antony said that any firm that entered into an agreement with the Indian government for more than Rs. 300 crores, was bound to the integrity pact. If any violation was found in terms of the conditions of the pact, then the company would be be liable for criminal action. The Indian Defense Minister added that the Integrity Pact is foolproof and that nobody could escape it.