AW gave €6 Million to Christian Michel to manage Indian Media from 2010 to 2012

Documents revealing the contract Christian Michel had with AW for managing India's media

Contract between Christian Michel had with AW for managing India's media
Contract between Christian Michel had with AW for managing India's media

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]C[/dropcap]hristian Michel, the fugitive middleman in the AgustaWestland (AW) deal, had collected Six Million Euros (₹45 crores) from AgustaWestland chopper manufacturer Finmeccanica for managing the Indian media.  The Finmeccanica and Michel’s company Global Services FZE of Dubai had entered into a post service contract after the controversial purchase of 12 VVIP choppers on March 1 2010. The contract is shown at the end of this page as a two-page appendix.

The agreement shows that from January 2010 onwards AgustaWestland (AW) the manufacturer, will pay €275,000 to Michel’s company for a period of 22 months. The total amount allotted is more than 6 million Euros, (€6,050,000 to be exact). It should be noted that the VVIP chopper deal was signed in 2009 and the media management contract started in 2010; for a period of 22 months Michel received 275,000 Euros per month for this covert PR exercise. Christian Michel would stay at The Claridges  New Delhi, a place known for schmoozing with journalists and bureaucrats. During this period, no word was published in Indian media about this deal. Media started writing only in early 2013 after the Italian probe agencies arrested Finmeccanica Chief Orsi.

According to the agreement, for this deal, Michel’s company would:

  • Identify and inform the Company of any hostile press activities that may impact the execution of the Contract.

  • Advise and assist the Company in the development of risk mitigation strategies to minimise the impact of any hostile press activities.

  • Provide the company with routine feedback on press activity with respect to the performance of the Contract or any associated contributing activities.

This 6 million Euro allocation to manage media houses exposes the clout fugitive Christian Michel had on Indian media. Hindu’s April 27, 2016, edition has published the entire contents of a letter Christian Michel allegedly wrote to Prime Minister Modi and Congress leaders have taken this report as gospel truth and gone to the airwaves. This letter bears closer examination.

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]I[/dropcap]n The Hindu article, a letter allegedly written by Christian Michel James (curiously signed as just “James”), in Page 2, Michel asserts: “the submission claimed that my company received a contract from AW to assist AW…” is “an arbitrary statement without any foundation…”. At the end of this post, we attach the relevant pages of the agreement between AW and Christian Michel’s Dubai-based company, Global Services FZE.

Yesterday editors such as Barkha Dutt and Rajdeep Sardesai kept referring to fugitive Christian Michel’s letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In a matter that is under investigation, even if the letter was indeed sent to the Prime Minister, would he release it to the media? Then that begs the question as to how they came to know about the letter written by a fugitive? Is it possible that the 6 Million Euro worth of media management fees is beginning to do its work now?

Now that the value of money pumped into Indian media during 2010 to 2012 is out it will be interesting to see who the recipients in the media were, of this largesse. At this time, only one journalist, Raju Santhanam has been questioned by Enforcement Directorate, in early 2015. His statement was given to the Enforcement Directorate (ED). In this submission, he admitted that he had accepted favours from Michel and is expected to be a witness in the case.

It is learned that the controversial, now jailed, arms dealer Abhishek Verma did the ground work for Michel in tackling the pliable journalists of Delhi. Abhishek Verma’s father late Shrikant Verma was a two-time Congress MP in Rajya Sabha. Shrikant Verma, a leading journalist, was the Hindi language teacher of Rajiv Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi family in the early 70s and an active member of inner circle of Gandhi family.

Below is a copy of the contract between AW and Christian Michel. Please note the customer name – Indian Air Force. S P Tyagi (and his family) have some explaining to do.

Appendix
Page 1 of contract between AW and Christian Michel
Page 2 of contract between AW and Christian Michel

Note:
1. The conversion rate used in this article is 1 Euro = 75.06 Rupees.
2. Text in Blue points to additional data on the topic.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. jaitly is a rotten apple in the basket of Modi ji. jaitly needs to be thrown out or he will get more rotten applies into the basket and India cannot afford that.

  2. Alongwith Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka, Robert Vadra, the Journalists hiding the Augusta Westland Scam need to be in the Tihar Jail.

  3. Is the agusta Westland ,a descendent of Westland helicopter company for which, if I remember correct, RaJiv Gandhi contracted with PM of UK to help the sick company.
    There were reports that those helicopters were not useful for ONGC.
    If the present Italian Westland is an offspring of the Uk firm, why in the first instance the deal was negotiated.
    This needs to be probed as
    as to the how and why of both deals with Westland.

  4. If my memory is not faulty,I remember the newspapers mentioning some years ago that during RaJiv Gandhi time, on a visit to UK, Indian PM met with UK prime minister and contracted to buy helicopters from a then Westland company to bolster up the sick company.That there were reports about such Westland copters not being a success for ONGC and Bombay High was also mentioned at that time.
    Has the same Westland Company come in the new avatar as Agusta Westland again to market their product to India through a greasy route?
    My recollection may or may not be correct. But the matter does merit an examination now.
    Are the people who decided then are the same in the instant case?

  5. I think the entire nexus needs to be exposed.Some of the crooks need to be given thumb screw treatment, get all evidences and whoever has been paid, their money/property should be confiscated and attached to government.Unless the government learn to less crooked,the crooks will not be caught and punished like they do in US of A,the crooks will get more and more emboldened.Best way to collar the crooks in India is to give them the “Madoff” treatment where the court assisted officials seized every little object of value including the jewels worn by his wife.This fellow got 50 years in jail and if he comes out early, he will come out as a beggar.Can modi and his team of wimps do anything similar?

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