Friday, October 21, 2016

CBI seeks Canada’s help in Air India bribery case probe

The Central Bureau of Investigation has sent yet another reminder to its Canadian counterparts seeking assistance in the examination of a person in connection with alleged payment of bribes to an associate of a Union Minister in the UPA-I government for a $ 100 million contract with Air India in 2007.
Over two years ago, an Ontario court had sentenced Nazeer Karigar, a Canadian national, to three years jail for allegedly bribing Indian public servants in a failed attempt to win the contract. The conspiracy was allegedly hatched in 2005-06.

Air India had floated a tender in February 2006 for purchase of passenger face recognition biometrics system for use in several major airports.

While sentencing Karigar, the court had observed that it was a sophisticated and carefully planned bribery scheme intended to involve senior public officials at Air India and an Indian Cabinet Minister.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) had informed the CBI about the findings and also that the accused, Karigar, purportedly disclosed he had paid $ 2.5 lakh to an associate of a Union Minister in a bid to bag the deal in favour of a company named CryptoMetrics. The CBI, which has registered a case on the allegations, suspects that Karigar had entered into a conspiracy with unknown Air India officials to influence the floating and processing of tender. He allegedly provided many important tender documents to the company well before it was floated by Air India. However, the contract was later scrapped.
21/10/16 Devesh K.Pandey/The Hindu

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