That even semi-PSUs like BEML can be a conduit for kickbacks while assembling CKD trucks is an eye-opener (No Truck with the Devil, Apr 16). Many other semi-PSUs are also doing assembly work on aircraft, missiles etc; it might be wise to run a check here too. A simple starting point would be whether, say, the assembled aircraft is costlier than flyaway imports and whether the assimilated technology is worthwhile. Being the largest arms importer in the world, in the long run we’ll have to go indigenous. Putting a full stop to the loot, getting the drdo, public and private sector to work together will be crucial.
Air Cmdre Raghubir Singh (retd), Pune
MoD’s purchase committee has a finance ministry representative, AS&FA. BEML’s board of directors also has government nominees. They cannot be absolved. No surprises if the trail leads all the way back to 1986 to the regime of you-know-who.
A.K. Saxena, Delhi
After May, all this will be forgotten; the new chief will induct 600 more trucks.
Arun Sathaye, Indore
History repeats itself. In 1962 we had a callous defence minister who led us to the slaughter against the Chinese. Fifty years on, we have another one, honest and sincere but ineffective to the core. And strangely, again he’s a Keralite. vB.T. Subbaiah, Napoklu, Kodagu
The Tatragate clarification by Antony and the general, far from salvaging army morale, has only damaged it more.
J.B. Sunuwar, Jalpaiguri
For god’s sake, next time dear PM, select a defence minister who is man enough for the role.
Col Romy Sakharia, Kochi
Post-’90s, with the arms lobbies in full flow, it was an unspoken norm to give the defence portfolio to the least corrupt candidate. But challenging the status quo has always been a Herculean task. Many chose to stay mum, others like George Fernandes struggled to hold the post. Antony, clinging to his squeaky-clean image, even refuses to acknowledge the issue.
S. Bengani, on e-mail
We have to blame the drdo for our present plight, for it continues to gobble up thousands of crores from the Consolidated Fund of India to design worthless products. Even A.P.J. Kalam could not ‘ignite’ minds there.
S. Raghunatha Prabhu, Alappuzha
No worries about any investigation. The JUDICIAL SYSTEM IS DEAD. Even any amount of flogging by the media might not work anymore.
No Wonder They Have No Money To Pay To Its Retired Officers On OROP (One Rank One Pay basis). I am sure that many civilians may not know that as per the sixth pay commission recommendations officers those officers who retired prior to 2006 of the Rank of Lt Col (Both Time Scale and Select Grade), Colonel and Brigadier (who is also a One Star General) all of them get the same rate of pension and that is the lowest rate drawn by a retired Lt Col. Government has also not solved the anomaly arising out of Rank Pay ghapala of fourth pay commission. Only one officer Major Dhanbalan has received his dues. Government says they have no money. Let them divert some from 2G, CWG, Coalgate, and currect TATRAgate scam. Could they have done it if it was some civil service was affected?
Can any one tell me why Government has to manufacture trucks? Of course we are aware that they did indulge in manufacturing scooter. Also it may be worthwhile finding out at what rate theysell their earthmoving equipment and who buys it? Was it really essential to establish BEML? And whose idea it was to start this PSU?
I also read in the news that Tatra trucks sell for $88,000 in the European market, while the Indian army pays $202,000 to BEML. A very good deal, indeed. Somebody is making a lot of money!!
army: tatra scandal
No Truck With The Devil
Outlook India : BEML’s Tatra trucks, ‘substandard’ monopolies and yet another defence scandal
Ravi Rishi has been the direct beneficiary of the scam ,the seeds for which were sown during Rajiv Gandhi's premiership in 1986.MOD's purchase committee has a representative of MOF ie AS&FA. Even BEML's board of Directors,has a government nominee.How could they be absolved of their responsibilities.Roots of this grand and decades-old conspiracy lie much deeper , may be, beyond MOD.
The drama has been going on since 1986.It is strange that MOF failed to raise its voice of dissent at various fora all these decades. An independent probe by the CBI covering the entire period since 1986, ruled by the Congress and several successive coalition governments, alone would reveal the truth.
The roles of arms lobbies and MOD's mandarins could be suspect.They,together, constitute the decision making machinery.
A K SAXENA ( A retired civil servant)
army: tatra scandal
No Truck With The Devil
Outlook India : BEML’s Tatra trucks, ‘substandard’ monopolies and yet another defence scandal
Ravi Rishi has been the direct beneficiary of the scam ,the seeds for which were sown during Rajiv Gandhi's premiership in 1986.MOD's purchase committee has a representative of MOF ie AS&FA. Even BEML's board of Directors,has a government nominee.How could they be absolved of their responsibilities.Roots of thia grand and decades-old conspiracy lie much deeper and beyond MOD.The drama has been going on since 1986.It is strange that MOF failed to raise its voice of dissent at various fora all these decades. An independent probe by the
Why bother. After May 2012 all will be forgotten. The remaining 600 trucks will be inducted in the service and meekly the next COAS will accept it as fait accomply. The only rescue could have come in the month of Jan but then the general was advised to move along with the wind. I have understood this advise as "forget it sab chalata hai". Surprisingly this advise was appreciated by all and sundry but I am still blank. If any one of your reader has understood any other the meaning or importance of this advise kindly let me know.
Looking at those over-crowded ambassador taxi I would think whether those people who made these things would have imagined if someone with do such extreme test of their product somewhere.
Believe it or not, I was one of the 13 passengers stuffed into one ambassador taxi once.
We in India tends to push the boundaries of tolerance level of anything we can lay our hands on. And that includes feeble human traits like, responsibility, accountability, shame, etc, etc.
I heard one story of a falling roof of a shopping mall in Seoul, South Korea. Long before it a economic giant.
That fall led to investigation and destruction of each illegal and substandard building in that city.
That in long term turned that city in one of the best in the world.
One or two collapse or fire we have for breakfast daily.
CBI is investigating the deal; thats what we are told.
But the eternal question, as Arjun asked Krishn; "hey taat, who will monitor the monitors?"
Mainly when monitors are more suspicious than monitored.
I also wonder what if the foot print will lead to the first family?
I really really wish they don't.
Otherwise the whole cleaning business is a non-starter, I tell you.
Ravi Rishi, IIT-ian, NRI businessman, is a small fish while BIGGER FISH are swimming unexamined!
The crux of the issue is to find out why the rules of procurement have been flouted.
The important rule of Government is that all defense purchases must be from OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) and certainly not from any agency or middle level distributor company which might be a fly-by-night operator.
The issue seems to be more than what it appears to be. It is because, during economic slowdown, it is almost clear, that original Tatra Company itself encouraged the middle man Ravinder Rishi Company Vectra. But in this regard you cannot find fault with Tatra Company of Czech or Slovakia but with our own Defense Ministry.
The troop carriers are entirely a different issue. To carry troops, Army does not need Tatra trucks but our own Tata and Ashok Leyland were good enough to supply 4*4 (double axle) trucks.
That even DPSU’s like BEML assembling trucks from CKD’s can be possible conduit for arms kickbacks via third country is quite revealing. One has to read only between the lines with the offer of 14 crores (with stress on as has been happening earlier)- to have an idea about the rot in defence deals. Apparently repeat order for TATRA on single tender basis as troop carrier which it was not-had been with ulterior motive and needs to be probed. Had Gen VK Singh bent with the winds –the hand in glove environment would have gone unchallenged? Many other DPSU’s too are doing assembly work on aircraft, missiles etc from CKD’s or sub-assemblies. It would be in order to search if Tatra type siphons have been in place in these too? Starting point can be if the cost of assembled aircraft be many times that of the fly away imports.And above all if we could assimilate any worthwhile technology which could be used in our LCA & other aerospace programs.In the long run only way to stop the loot which has been seemingly going on is to switch to the indigenous only. It has to be great national effort lead by DRDO with active participation of both public & private sectors.
Good piece of investigative journalism. How can mere humans resist such massive sales pressures from huge corporations?
Tatra trucks are no doubt a good piece of technology...but buying it from outside for more then a crore which is not the actual cost..is a thing to investigate.."Where is the extra money going".....???
Whole lot of news report about TATRA but one import detail has eveded all jurnos. Will SOMEONE---------- ANYONE ---- please give the cost of TATRA 4x4, 6x6, 8x8 & 12x12 Trucks as per CHEZ TATRA Company Brochure and the cost at which it was being sold to Army by BEML????????
NASHIK: Commenting on Army Chief General V K Singh's allegation that he was offered a bribe, Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar today asked why the incident was not brought to government's notice earlier if it had taken place over a year and half ago.
This from the very Senior Minister who does not know that Chief immediately brought the Bribe offer in notice of Anthony.
They are not serious at all about Army that is what it shows !
Tatra trucks are not substandard, but they need to sell directly to the customer (Indian Army) , not via these sleazy middlemen. Nothing of value is added by having these people add their huge commission.
Tatra trucks are a good innovative design
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