India | Updated Apr 12, 2012 at 04:50pm IST –IBN Live
New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has sought an appointment with Army Chief General VK Singh on his letter detailing the Rs 14 crore bribery offer to him by a former Army officer to clear the purchase of sub-standard all-terrain vehicles for the forces. CBI officers are likely to meet General Singh on Friday as the Army Chief is not in New Delhi.
Lieutenant General (retired) Tejinder Singh, who allegedly offered the bribe on behalf of Tatra trucks, will also face the CBI officers after the investigating agency meets the Army Chief. The CBI will try to get more details from the Army Chief on the allegations levelled by him against Lt Gen Tejinder Singh.
General VK Singh will be asked why he delayed complaining about Lt Gen Tejinder Singh’s alleged bribe offer. The Army Chief would also be asked to explain why no immediate action was taken by him on the bribe offer.
Senior CBI officers involved with the investigation feel that the matter involves the Army Chief and another very senior Army officer, and so they should study all the details of the case and proceed accordingly. They have also sought the opinion of Attorney General Goolam E Vahanvati on the allegations.
On March 26, in an interview to English daily, the Army Chief had alleged that he was offered a bribe to clear a tranche of Tatra trucks. The Army Chief and a press release by the Army Headquarters hinted at the involvement of Lt Gen Tejinder Singh.
General Singh said that he had informed Defence minister AK Antony about the bribe offer. Antony ordered a CBI inquiry into the allegation after the matter came to light.
Refuting the allegations Lt Gen Tejinder Singh filed a defamation case in the Patiala House against General Singh and four other senior Army officers. The court will give its order on April 21 whether or not to summon General VK Singh.
Besides General VK Singh, he has also named Vice Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General SK Singh, Lieutenant General BS Thakur (Director General Military Intelligence), Major General SL Narshiman (Additional Director General of Public Information) and Lieutenant Colonel Hitten Sawhney.