Controversial arms dealers late Ravi Rishi and fugitive Sanjay Bhandari-promoted Vectra Group were actively helped by tainted former Home and Finance Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram. From 2005 onwards, because of Intelligence Bureau’s adverse reports, both Rishi and Bhandari were not given security clearance, but shockingly the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Government and the Home Ministry entertained their firm, the Vectra Group. The firm was blacklisted only in 2012 when it was caught in the Tatra Trucks bribery case.
PGurus earlier wrote a detailed report on how this blacklisted Vectra Group still had defence contracts and other helicopter contracts in the name of shell firms.
Our London based researchers found that there were a series of communications between Ravinder Kumar Rishi (Ravi Rishi) and Sanjay Bhandari with several tainted Home Ministry officials when Chidambaram was the Home Minister. The emails also show that the Intelligence Bureau was resisting giving security clearance to both Rishi and Bhandari. The reason was that Ravi Rishi was reported to be part of a Russian espionage case and Sanjay Bhandari was involved in some criminal cases and it was reported to the Home Ministry by the Intelligence agencies on 2005. When Chidambaram landed in the Home Ministry, with his knowledge, certain pliable officials in the Home Ministry’s Internal Security Division did a trick to give the Vectra Group to lease their helicopters for anti-Naxal operations.
The trick was to change the directors of Vectra Group, though it was promoted by Ravi Rishi and Sanjay Bhandari. Some notes of Home Ministry show the objections of officials on Ravi Rishi’s daughters Suruchi Rishi, Swati Rishi, Rati Rishi and son Hemang Rishi and wife Dipti Rishi being inducted as Directors of these firms. But these objections were overruled by senior IAS officers in the Internal Security Division which was supported by Chidambaram.
Till the Tatra Trucks scam blew up in 2012, the Home Ministry knowingly was entertaining Ravi Rishi and Sanjay Bhandari who were blessed by Chidambaram. Meanwhile, many officials and journalists were enjoying these two black listed persons’ hospitality in London. We have already reported how this controversial Vectra Group is still operating in Defence and many other sectors, though the Courts have not closed cases against them.
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