The ED has attached a property worth Rs 4.5 crore situated in Delhi in the Pilatus Aircraft bribery case, the agency said on Wednesday. The property is in the name of Sharan Svadha LLP, a beneficiary firm that received ‘proceeds of crime’ from the bribes taken by defence dealer Sanjay Bhandari.
The ED initiated an investigation under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act against Pilatus Aircraft Ltd of Switzerland, defence dealer Sanjay Bhandari and his firm Offset India Solutions Pvt Ltd (OISPL) based on an FIR registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
“Investigation revealed that Pilatus Aircraft Ltd, Switzerland entered into a criminal conspiracy with Sanjay Bhandari, his partner Bimal Sareen and others for obtaining the contract of supply of 75 Basic Trainer Aircrafts to the Indian Air Force. In pursuance of this conspiracy, kickbacks (proceeds of crime) of Rs 343 crore from Pilatus Aircraft Ltd were received in the bank accounts of the companies controlled by Sanjay Bhandari in India and UAE for influencing the process of contract in its favour,” the ED has said.
Part of the kickbacks were transferred to Sharan Svadha LLP, an entity beneficially owned by Bimal Sareen and his wife, for purchasing an immovable property in New Delhi which has been attached, the agency said. Further Investigation is under process.
Bhandari has fled the country and is located in London where the government is contesting an extradition case against him. He was earlier probed for transferring certain properties to companies which were allegedly associated with Robert Vadra, son-in-law of former Congress president Sonia Gandhi. TNN