India’s decision to blacklist AgustaWestland is set to be delayed as the country’s Solicitor General Mohan Parasaran advised against any immediate steps.
"The Law officer has asked us to wait before going ahead with the blacklisting of the Anglo-Italian firm. We have now referred the issue to CBI, which is carrying out legal proceedings against the firm in India," A Defence Ministry source was quoted as saying by PTI.
The Indian MoD cancelled VVIP helicopter contract, when allegations of bribery surfaced, after agreeing to arbitration proceedings.
The arbitration process is yet to start between the two sides as they have not agreed upon the third member of the arbitration panel in which AgustaWestland has nominated former Supreme Court judge Justice (retd) BN Srikrishna and the Defence Ministry has nominated former Justice Jeevan Reddy, according to PTI.
Meanwhile, AgustaWestland has maintained it did not offer kickbacks to Indian officials to help win the contract.