Warship Scam: Another Scam by UPA, bigger than Augusta
Naval warship seems to be another scam by UPA government where the previous government approved the inferior quality of steel to be used by the Italian firm Fincantieri for the Manufacturing of two naval tankers. Manohar Parikar has has ordered a “discreet inquiry” into the alleged naval tanker scam, according to the reports from India today group.
What is this warship scam?
- Italian firm – Fincantieri – reportedly favoured by the UPA government. The company won deal from the government for two naval tankers in 2009.
- The UPA government approved use of inferior quality of steel in the naval tankers manufactured by the firm.
- The government is now scrutinising details of the contract awarded to the Italian firm.
- The lid over the scam has been blown off by a former naval officer who has demanded an investigation into the 2009 purchase of two fleet tankers, crucial for Indian Navy’s deep water capabilities.
- These tankers had to be bought in 2009 and 2011 because INS Vikramaditya, Indian Navy’s biggest aircraft carrier, was coming on from Russia.
- At that time, the then Defence Minister AK Antony had hailed this as one of the fastest procurements of a fleet tanker manufactured with Indian specifications.
- There are allegations that instead of using weapons grade steel, commercial grade steel was used.
- When one of the tankers was coming to India from Russia escorting INS Vikramaditya, it ran into rough seas and hull of the brand new ship developed cracks.
How it was done?
- 2006: India floats bids for navy tanker ships
- Three countries – Russia, Korea and Italy – file respond to the tender.
- Only Russian firm offers required military-grade steel (DMR 249A)
- India relaxes steel requirement, Russia backs out
- 2009: Italian firm Fincantieri wins deal for 2 tankers
- 2010: CAG criticises the deal, says ‘undue’ favours were done
- 2016: Navy officer sounds alarm, Ministry of Defence begins discreet inquiry