New Delhi: The Defence Ministry has written to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and sought preliminary inquiry in the 2008 Embraer aircraft deal.
Sources said this letter has been written just days after Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) chief S. Christopher on Monday met Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar over the Embraer aircraft deal row and briefed him about the situation.
The DRDO has written to Brazilian company Embraer, seeking more details on a report in the Brazilian media that it had employed an agent to sell three EMB 145 aircraft to the DRDO in 2008.
In the letter sent on Saturday, the DRDO has given Embraer a period of 15 days to explain with details the news report, which was based on investigations by the Federal Public Prosecutor’s Office in Brazil.
The Defence Minister had earlier this week asserted that if the issues display a criminal nature then it will be handed over to the CBI.
Speaking to the media, Parrikar stated that he has asked the DRDO to submit a complete report on the matter on Monday, and it will be only after that that he can make a concrete statement.
A joint U.S.-Brazil investigation into Embraer has uncovered a bribery case leading to a deal signed between the company and DRDO in 2008 for three aircraft equipped with indigenous radars for AEW&C (airborne early warning and control systems).
The company has been under the scanner of the United States Justice Department since 2010 after a contract with the Dominican Republic raised suspicions.