VVIP chopper deal: Cong gives breach of privilege notice against govt in RS

New Delhi: Congress today gave a breach of privilege notice in Rajya Sabha against the Defence Ministry for issuing a statement on AgustaWestland chopper deal when Parliament is in session.

The notice was given by Congress MPs Shantaram Naik and Hussain Dalwai. The two contended that the statement on the issue should have been given in the House by the Defence Minister as Rajya Sabha is in session, party sources said.

According to the Congress members, publishing of a clarification through a government website, therefore, constitutes a breach of privilege of the House and of the members, the sources said.

The Defence Ministy had in a statement yesterday refuted Congress' claims that AgustaWestland was blacklisted by the UPA government and said it was the NDA, on July 3, 2014, that had actually put on hold all procurement and acquisition cases in the pipeline of six companies involved in the VVIP chopper scam.

On the Congress allegation that the NDA gave clearance to a joint venture involving AgustaWestland through the Foreign Investment Promotion Board, the ministry had said this proposal was approved on September 2, 2011 based on an application by Indian Rotorcraft Ltd, a joint venture of Tata Sons with AgustaWestland NV, Netherlands.

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