VVIP chopper deal case: CBI records statement of Wanchoo
A team of Central Bureau of Investigation officials on Friday questioned Goa Governor B. V. Wanchoo as a witness in the AgustaWestland chopper deal scam. Mr. Wanchoo said he was pleased to give his statement.
Mr. Wanchoo is the second Governor to be quizzed by the CBI in this case after West Bengal Governor M. K. Narayanan who resigned recently after the CBI action.
Mr. Wanchoo was the chief of the Special Protection Group when the deal was signed.
The CBI team quizzed Mr. Wanchoo in Panaji and recorded his statement for its probe into allegations of bribery in the Rs. 3,600-crore deal.
Sources said the need to record statements of Mr. Wanchoo and Mr. Narayanan was felt as both had participated in the meeting in 2005 that allowed key changes in the technical specifications of the chopper.
The CBI had registered a case against former IAF Chief S.P. Tyagi along with 13 others including his cousins and European middlemen in the case.
The allegation against the former Air Chief was that he had reduced flying ceiling of the helicopter so that AgustaWestland was included in the bids. Mr. Tyagi has refuted the allegation against him.
Wanchoo ‘happy’ to meet CBI
Governor B. V. Wanchoo said he was pleased to give his statement as a witness to the Central Bureau of Investigation(CBI) on Friday, and hopes that his statement would have clarified any issues that the CBI may have had and that the sleuths would conclude their investigation to bring out the truth at the very earliest.
This was stated in an official press release issued by Goa Department of Information and Publicity here on Friday evening after the CBI team recorded the statement of the Goa Governor at Raj Bhavan.
Stating that a team of the CBI recorded the statement of Mr. Wanchoo as a witness in VVIP Helicopter case under Section 161 Cr.P.C. on Friday, the press release said that the Governor, after he became aware through the media several months back that the CBI was desirous of recording his statement as a witness, was very keen that the same be recorded at the very earliest for the purpose of completing the legal process in the above case.
The Governor was, therefore, happy when a formal request from the CBI was received on June 24, where after the CBI was intimated that they could record the Governor’s statement in Goa, said the press release.