Akon Inc was in conspiracy with the Indian lady scientist
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday booked US-based firm Akon Inc and an Indian scientist Priya Suresh for cheating India’s premier defence research organization Defence Avionics Research Establishment (DARE). The cheating took place in a one-million-dollar deal in 2009 for the purchase and later non-supply of radar components. California based firm AKON Inc was in conspiracy with the lady scientist, then working at DARE.
The agency registered the case after getting clearance to lodge an FIR (First Information Report) against Priya Suresh, a scientist then posted at DARE, Bengaluru. CBI has named AKON Inc. based in California in the US in its FIR for sending incomplete equipment even after receiving payments for 35 Voltage Controlled Oscillator (VCO)-based Radio Frequency (RF) Generator used in radar-based electronic warfare for USD one million dollars. AKON was selected after a global tender and was to supply the equipment in three tranches.
The investigation agency said that even now only 13 units are held by DARE and the remaining are with AKON.
The CBI said that she had accepted these 35 units even after having known from AKON representatives through emails that these units were in the developmental stage, they said. The agency, which did a preliminary enquiry into the matter before filing the FIR, found that 24 units were sent back for “upgrade” without stating the nature of the upgrade, 11 remained in DARE store till 2011 unused and untested, said CBI.
The lady scientist allowed the balance payment to be made to AKON certifying that units were working satisfactorily knowing that 24 units are still with the US-based vendor. In 2011, after ensuring payment to the vendor, the scientist recommended that 11 units held in store were not working and should be sent back to the vendor for repair, said CBI. The investigation agency said that even now only 13 units are held by DARE and the remaining are with AKON.
The units supplied by the vendor did not meet the specifications of the order and their weight was approximately three times more than the dummy provided by it, they said. Testing of VCO-based radar threat simulator could not be completed by a Bengaluru-based vendor even after full payment of Rs 9.5 lakh because of non-supply of the component by AKON, said CBI.