Saturday, October 20, 2018

Swamy urges CBI to widen probe against AirAsia

New Delhi: BJP leader Subramanian Swamy has urged CBI to widen the ongoing probe in the “illegal” allotment of flying licenses to AirAsia. In a detailed complaint of more than 200 pages to CBI Director Alok Verma, Swamy said that the AirAsia deal during UPA regime violated aspects of national security rules, foreign investment regulations and civil aviation norms. In his complaint Swamy produced many internal emails exposing the lobbying with Finance and Civil Aviation officials by AirAsia officers and Tata Group officers, who are already facing CBI probe.

CBI in May last week registered FIR against AirAsia Chief Tony Fernandes, Tata Trusts’ Managing Trustee R venkatraman and others. CBI’s FIR had alleged that Venkataraman was lobbying the Government to secure mandatory approvals, some of them through “non-transparent means”, including the then Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance, No Objection Certificate and the attempt for removal or modification of 5/20 rule. AirAsia officials Bo Lingam, Rajinder Dubey, Sunil Kapur and lobbyist Deepak Talwar were also named by CBI in the FIR.

In his complaint Swamy pointed out that both AirAsia and Tata Group officials violated many rules including national security related norms in connivance with former Finance Minister P Chidambaram and former Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh. Swamy said that “the hasty grant of approval of FDI in a company yet to be incorporated” and which was not engaged in operating scheduled and non-scheduled air transport services was contrary to the FDI policy permitting FDI only in existing airlines.
20/10/18 Pioneer

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