Ukraine Suspects Bribery Worth Rs 17.5 Crore Given To Ministry Of Defence Officials, Asks For Help
Ukraine is investigating alleged kickbacks in India’s purchase of spare parts of military transport aircraft An-32 to the tune of $2.6 million (Rs 17.55 crore) in which its Anti-Corruption Bureau suspects the involvement of Indian Defence Ministry officials.
According to records accessed by The Indian Express, on February 13, 2018, the National Anti-Corruption Bureau(NAB) of Ukraine sent a “request for international legal assistance” via the Indian convoy in Kiev, to the Ministry of Home Affairs. They sought the names of all the officials of the Ministry of Defence who were involved in the negotiations, development, signing and implementation of the contract.
What are their suspicions?
The record shows that the NAB suspects that 11 months after the contract was signed between Ukrainian state-run Spetstechnoexport and Ministry of Defence (Air Force Headquarters) on November 26, 2014, to deliver spare parts to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), why Spetstechnoexport signed another pact with a little-known Global Marketing SP Ltd for its implementation.
Since the second agreement was not a requirement because the initial deal was sealed on November 2014, NAB suspects that the Indian officials “might be witnesses of the above circumstances” in which Spetstechnoexport made the deal with Global Marketing SP in August 2015. They want to talk to the Indian officials regarding the same.
“Despite the fact that Ukraine alleges 17.5-cr kickbacks to MoD officials, asks India for help terms of the agreement had not been actually fulfilled, the parties signed statements of completion whereupon Spetstechnoexport transferred $2.6 million of budget funds to the account of Global Marketing opened in the UAE,” wrote the Chief Unit of Detectives of the NAB.
The NAB has sought information on the involvement of Global Marketing in the “conclusion and/or implementation of the contract”; contacts, if any, between defence ministry officials with Global Marketing’s representatives; factors that influenced the “timeliness and completeness of payments”; and, Global Marketing’s involvement in the signing of “supplementary agreements”, reported The Indian Express.
On the other hand, they have sought information from Noor Islamic Bank in Dubai about the movement of money between August 2015 and January 2018 from Global Marketing’s account and all the IP addresses that accessed it.
The Soviet-origin An-32 aircraft are the transport workhorse of the Indian Air Force and are vital to maintain and supply troops in the eastern and northern borders. This product has become the aircraft-on-call for all disaster-relief and special operations missions.
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