NEW DELHI: There was no corruption in the deal for 12 AgustaWestland choppers for Indian VVIPs, an Italian court ruled on Saturday. "There is, conclusively, no evidence of the corrective agreement stipulated according to the imputation, with the foreign public official, just as it requires the incriminating law ." an appeals court in Milan said according to news agency Reuters.
The deal worth Rs 3,546-crore for 12 VVIP choppers had to be scrapped after allegations of corruption had suffered during the previous UPA.
The development comes months after the Milan court acquitted Giuseppe Orsi, the former president of Finmeccanica, and Bruno Spagnolini, the former CEO of the AgustaWestland helicopter unit, in January this year.
The UPA had signed the contract in 2010 for the purchase of 12 VVIP choppers for use by top leaders, including President, Prime Minister and former prime ministers. On January 1, 2014, the contract was scrapped amid allegations that parent company of the supplier AgustaWestland, Finmeccanica, had paid Rs 423 crore in kickbacks in India as part of the deal.
In July 2018, the Congress had alleged that Christian Michel, the British middleman in the deal, was being forced to frame UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi in return for exoneration from criminal proceedings. The party slammed Prime Minister Narendra Modi of using probe agencies to carry out a smear campaign against opposition leaders.