The Delhi High Court on Monday allowed businessman Rajeev Saxena, who has turned approver in a money laundering case related to the AgustaWestland helicopter scam, to travel outside India to receive treatment for blood cancer and other ailments, PTI reported.
Justice Anu Malhotra granted relief to Saxena, who was allegedly a middleman in the helicopter deal, by vacating the High Court’s June 4 interim order that had stayed the trial court’s June 1 decision allowing him to travel abroad.
The court, however, asked Saxena to provide the Enforcement Directorate by June 13 his travel information, including details of his hotels, hospitals, doctors, and treatment schedule. The agency will then verify the details. The businessman is expected to visit the United Kingdom, mainland European countries and the United Arab Emirates for treatment between June 25 and July 24, ANI reported.
The High Court noted that Saxena had been granted bail on medical grounds before being pardoned and made an approver in the case. The judge also noted that two other accused in the case, Gautam Khaitan and Ritu Khaitan, had also been allowed to travel abroad. “This court does not consider it appropriate to vary the impugned order [of the trial court],” the High Court ruled.
Saxena was arrested after being extradited to India from Dubai on January 30. He allegedly played a key role in laundering the money used to pay kickbacks. According to a supplementary chargesheet filed by the Enforcement Directorate in July, the bribe money was “layered” and projected as “untainted money” with the help of “fictitious invoices.” The kickbacks were reportedly paid to companies controlled by lawyer Gautam Khaitan using fictitious engineering contracts.
The Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government signed the Rs 3,565-crore helicopter deal with British-Italian firm AgustaWestland in 2010. The deal was put on hold after Italy arrested the head of Finmeccanica, AgustaWestland’s parent company, on charges of paying bribes to win the contract.