Court order on IAF ex-chief’s bail plea on Dec 26
New Delhi, Dec 23 (IANS) A court here on Friday said it would pass order, on December 26, on the bail plea of former Indian Air Force (IAF) chief S.P. Tyagi and others arrested in AgustaWestland chopper deal case.
Special CBI Judge Arvind Kumar reserved the order for Monday on the bail applications of Tyagi, his cousin Sanjeev Tyagi and a Delhi-based lawyer Gautam Khaitan.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) opposed the bail plea of accused saying they are persons of high ranking and if released on bail, they “may influence witnesses, destroy evidences and hamper the ongoing probe which is at a very crucial stage”.
The agency also told the court that the investigation is going on in the case and CBI was getting support from other countries also. “We have evidences where the meetings unofficially took place for the purpose of crime,” it added.
Tyagi’s defence counsel while seeking bail told court that former IAF chief was booked and arrested in the case without any basis.
Tyagi — the first chief of any wing of the armed forces to be arrested in the country — and the others were allegedly involved in irregularities in the procurement of 12 AW-101 VVIP helicopters from Britain-based AgustaWestland.
Tyagi’s counsel said that he has nothing do with the helicopters deal and termed “baselesss” the allegation that he has hatched conspiracy to reduce the service ceiling of the helicopters from 6,000-meters to 4,500 meters to make AgustaWestland an eligible company to supply a dozen helicopters for VVIP flying duties.
The counsel said that reducing of service ceiling was taken in a meeting held by Principal Secretary to Prime Minister in November 19, 2003 and the contract was awarded in 2010, while Tyagi was IAF chief from 2004 to 2007 so he has nothing to do either with process or awarding of contract as both of them did not take place during his tenure.
Citing his health condition, Tyagi’s counsel told court that he is 72-years-old and suffering from various ailments.
Other two accused also sought bail arguing that they will follow every conditions imposed by court and will not try to influence witness or tamper evidence.
The trio were arrested on December 9 by the CBI and are currently in judicial custody till December 30.