Action if graft found in copter deal: Antony
“We have requested the CBI to make an early inquiry. I can assure you the moment we get a report, we will take the strongest action provided in the integrity pact — that includes cancellation of the contract and blacklisting the companies. But before the CBI report, I don't want to jump to any conclusion,” the minister said on the sidelines of a conference here.
The defence ministry has also put on hold purchase of the remaining nine of the 12 helicopters for which the R3,600-crore deal was struck in 2010. On the payments made so far, Antony said:
“If the Indian government paid any amount, as per the provisions of the integrity pact, we can get back the whole money we paid to the vendor.”
“As per the defence procurement procedure, before finalising the contract for any contract beyond R300 crore, the vendor must sign an integrity pact with the government of India, agreeing to our conditions. If they violate its conditions, they are liable to criminal action,” he said.
Antony referred to the actions taken by the government in such cases, where six foreign defence firms were blacklisted. “When we saw media reports of arrests and investigation in Italy, we wrote to our ambassador there to get details from the Italian government