After Dubai court ordered for the extradition of British national and alleged middleman Christian Michel in the Rs 3,600 crore AgustaWestland VVIP choppers deal case, he is apparently missing.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED), in its charge sheet filed against Michel in June 2016, had alleged that he received about Rs 225 crore from AgustaWestland. The money was nothing but "kickbacks" paid by the firm to execute the 12 helicopter deal in favour of the firm in "guise of" of genuine transactions for performing multiple work contracts in the country, it had said.
Michel is one of the three middlemen being probed in the case, besides Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa, by the ED and the CBI. Both the agencies have notified an Interpol red corner notice (RCN) against him after the court issued a non-bailable warrant against him.
“Extradition is not merely a judicial process. It's not often understood that extradition is a handled through foreign officers as it's a political act. Therefore, it begins with the foreign ministry in Abu Dhabi or in our case in New Delhi. I am surprised they sought that opinion, if they sought that opinion, because I negotiated the extradition treaty in 1997 and the treaty is very clear. I remember the Emiratis were only insisting that they will not extradite their own nationals. So, we kept that in the treaty, but it's very clear in the treaty that you can extradite other countries nationals, our Indian nationals or nationals of any other country,” KC Singh, a former diplomat told CNBC-TV18.
Narendra Taneja, BJP spokesperson, said, "Our effort is very clear. Our effort is to bring him to India and also show that we can connect all the dots. The investigation into the corruption, into the bribe and all that issues is resolved and communicated to the people of this country, because after all, the money that was taken away belongs to the people of this country. So, our effort is on and the ministry of external affairs is working and as ambassador KC Singh explained that there are channels and there are procedures, that government is pursuing along those lines.”