Manohar Parrikar
Manohar ParrikarReuters

To clear the air around the AugustaWestland chopper scam and the process of its investigation on Indian soil, a detailed chronology of events and facts will be placed before Parliament on May 4, said Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar.

"I will place the detailed chronology, giving facts about the chopper deal before Parliament on Wednesday. I will place the detailed chronology, giving how and when necessary clauses or provisions were relaxed to suit the company," he was quoted by PTI.

Challenging the claim that the UPA government had ordered blacklisting of AgustaWestland in connection with the VVIP chopper scam, he asked the Congress to show proof, if any, for such an action taken.

"Why no action was taken against the company till 2014? Why was the company not blacklisted by then UPA government?" he asked.

The Congress, in turn, has questioned the motive behind the ruling BJP government's permission to allow a fraud and blacklisted company to take part in defence contracts in 2014 and the Make in India programme after that.

On Saturday, ANI reported that the minister sought a clarification from the former UPA regime on who received the alleged kickbacks in the AgustaWestland chopper deal.

"The moot question is who took the money in Agusta deal. Those who were at the helm at the time when the deal was struck owe an explanation. The Italian court has clearly said that an amount of Rs. 125 crore was paid. It has even disclosed some names. The government of that day needs to answer," he said.

Parrikar said that the investigation will have to prove that kickbacks were received as those who did receive it would have made sure to leave no trail.

On April 8, an Italian court held the chief executive of Finmeccanica (the parent company of AugustaWestland) guilty of international corruption and money laundering. The court noted that the firm paid bribes to top Congress leaders to bag the Rs. 3,600-crore deal.

Parrikar said that his ministry has received a copy of the Italian court order and is in the process of translating it into English.

The DNA reported that the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government cancelled the deal and the Central Bureau of Investigation probed the matter. The law enforcement agency has so far registered a case against former Indian Air Force chief S P Tyagi and 12 others, including his cousins, for alleged cheating, corruption and criminal conspiracy in the chopper scam.