India's Defence Ministry on Monday has put on hold all the deals with the UK-firm Rolls-Royce until a CBI probe into allegations of kickbacks and unauthorised use of an outside “commercial adviser” by the British firl in contracts with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. (HAL) is completed.
Rolls-Royce contracts, worth nearly $1.6 billion for the supply of aircraft engines to HAL for its trainer aircraft during 2007-2011, are under a cloud.
The controversy evoked sharp reaction from political parties with CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat tweeting that as in the Agusta VVIP chopper scam, the UPA government was forced to order a CBI probe only after foreign governments acted against arm dealers.
“The probe progresses only if it is monitored by the courts. The Congress government always hides the scams,” the ministry spokesperson was quoted as saying by The Hindu.
Rolls-Royce said it would cooperate with the authorities and had repeatedly made clear that “we will not tolerate misconduct of any sort”.