CBI questions Narayanan in chopper scam, Goa guv next

CBI questions Narayanan in chopper scam, Goa guv next

CBI questions Narayanan in chopper scam, Goa guv next

The CBI has questioned West Bengal Governor M K Narayanan as a witness in the AgustaWestland chopper deal case.

This is the first time a governor has been quizzed by the investigating agency.

Narayanan was questioned in the Raj Bhavan, on Tuesday. The CBI listened to his explanation for changing certain technical parameters set for the chopper deal in 2005, which is said to have resulted in AgustaWestland being favoured.

Now, the CBI is likely to question Goa Governor B V Wanchoo. Narayanan, then National Security Adviser, and Wanchoo, then director of Special Protection Group (SPG), were part of a group that dealt with the tendering procedures for the purchase of helicopters.

Incidentally, Narayanan and Wanchoo are on the list of UPA-appointed governors whom the Narendra Modi-led government wants to remove. Narayanan’s tenure ends on January 24, 2015, while Wanchoo’s ends on May 4, 2017.

A case was registered by the CBI against former Air chief S P Tyagi and 12 others, including his cousins Sanjeev, Rajeev and Sandeep on charges of cheating, corruption and criminal conspiracy in the deal in which Rs 360 crore was alleged to have been paid as bribe. The Tyagis have denied their involvement.

CBI officials said the need to record the statement of Narayanan was felt as he, along with Wanchoo, had participated in the meeting in 2005 that allowed key changes in the technical specifications of the chopper. The Comptroller and Auditor General had also noted this point.