The VVIP Chopper #AgustaWestland scam is getting murkier and extremely troublesome for Sonia Gandhi and the Congress Party. To make matters worse, Kirit Somaiyya, BJP MP shot off a letter to the Enforcement Directorate and the Central Bureau of Investigation calling for an investigation into the alleged links between Agusta Westland, alleged middlemen of the deal, Emaar MGF and Rahul Gandhi
The Alleged Modus Operandi of the Scam:
Finmeccanica SpA, Italy is the holding Company of AgustaWestland Limited, UK which was contracted to supply the 12 VVIP Choppers by India. It has been established by the Italian Courts that “Software Exports” and “Engineering Consultancy” invoices were used as a decoy to transfer millions of dollars to India. This route was allegedly used by Finmeccanica (Agusta Westland’s parent) to transfer money to companies such as IDS Infotech and Aeromatrix.
These companies are among the six companies which are under the scanner of the Ministry of Defence:
So who are the people behind these companies?
IDS Infotech Ltd was partially owned by the brother of former Union minister in the UPA, Santosh Bagrodia. Three Bagrodia family members were directors of IDS Infotech. While Satish, younger brother of the former Union minister, and his son Manish were directors since 1989, another son Ashish became a director in 2005.
IDS Infotech sold off the AgustaWestland software development work to a company called Aeromatrix, based in Chandigarh. The Annual Report of Aeromatrix, for the year ended 2010 shows that 83% of the shares were held by M/s Infotech Design System (IDS) Limited, Mauritius and the remaining 17% odd were owned by Gautam Khaitan. The 4 Directors of Aeromatrix were Guido Haschke, Valentino Gerosa, Gautam Khaitan and Arihant Jain. M/s Infotech Design System (IDS) Limited, Mauritius was owned by Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa
Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa, alleged middlemen in the AgustaWestland deal, had built a complex maze of companies to route bribes to India. How exactly Guido Haschke withdrew money from Aeromatrix India and distributed it as kickbacks remains to be investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation.
Who Is Guido Haschke?
Incidentally Guido Haschke and Gautam Khaitan, Directors of Aeromatrix Info Solutions Private Limited were appointed as Directors on the Board of Emaar MGF Land Limited in 2009. The details are given below:
As per the ROC records Haschke resigned from Emaar within 2 months of appointment but Gautam Khaitan continued to be a Director till about Jan 2012. Emaar MGF consistently maintain that they have no relation whatsoever with Haschke or the AgustaWestland Scam. The records however show that the prime accused were Directors in their Group Company which calls for a thorough investigation at the very least.
The MGF Group was set up by V.P. Gupta. VP Gupta is the grandfather of Shravan Gupta and Kanishka Singh. Shravan Gupta was just last week questioned by ED in relation to this chopper scam and also for his links with Hashke. He was also questioned about “business links” with Rahul Gandhi’s aide Kanishka Singh
This, the chain is complete and this is the exact link which BJP MP Kirit Somaiyya is referring to:
Alleged kickbacks paid via fake invoices by Finmeccanica to Indian companies such as IDS Infotech and Aeromatrix. These companies were controlled, via a complex maze of companies by Guido Haschke, alleged middleman in the AgustaWestland deal and also by Gautam Khaitan. Both Hashke and Khaitan were Directors in Emaar MGF, which was founded by Rahul Gandhi’s close aide’s grandfather. And to add to this, Rahul Gandhi is said to have been involved in financial dealings with Emaar MGF, involving 2 flats in Emaar MGF’s mall.
It is known that money was passed on to Indian companies owned by Hashke and company. We still have a long way before determining the money trail and nailing the accused but this link certainly needs to be investigated and from the looks of it, the agencies are already on to this.