India makes fresh request to Italy for info in chopper scam

New Delhi: India on Friday made a fresh request to Italy for information on alleged kickbacks in supply of Rs 3600-crore worth of Agusta Westland's VVIP helicopters.
Noting that there were reports in Italy on investigation in the alleged scam in a defence helicopter deal with Italian-firm Finmeccanica and its chief being arrested in Milan, the government has made a fresh request for information in the matter, top government sources said here.
"The Ministry of Defence has made the request through Indian mission (in Rome)," they said.
They said, though the request has been made in past also, India has not been able to elicit any response, the argument being that this was a judicial process.
Yesterday, MoD had formally asked Finmeccanica to state whether any money was illegally paid to any Indian entity or individual amidst its warning of legal action including blacklisting of the firm.
Briefing the reporters earlier this week, officials spokesperson in the Ministry of External Affairs had said, "As far as we are concerned, we had through our Embassy in Italy requested the Italian Government to provide us information that they may have in connection with allegations which have been made on the matter.
"We have not received any response from them so far on that, the argument being that this is in Italy a judicial process. Because the prosecutors are perhaps working under judicial supervision, therefore, the executive is not able to share that information with us. That is where we stand on that."