New Delhi: The CBI on Wednesday carried out searches at the residential premises of two retired Army officers and a Vectra official in connection with its probe into alleged irregularities in the procurement and supply of Tatra all-terrain vehicles to the Army.

Teams of CBI officials carried out searches across the national capital and Noida at the residence of retired Brigadier P C Das at Vasant Kunj and retired Colonel Anil Dutta at Noida. Residential premises of Vectra employee Anil Mansaramani were also searched by the agency.

Vectra, which has controlling stake in Tatra Sipox UK has come under CBI scanner over alleged irregularities in the supply of all terrain vehicle components to the public sector BEML which assembles and supplies these vehicles to the Army. Vectra Chairman Ravinder Rishi and BEML Chairman VRS Natarajan have been questioned by the CBI, agency sources said.

After getting inputs from the duo, the agency found it necessary to search the residences of the retired Army officials and the Vectra employee to gather some crucial documents which could help the agency in the case, they said.

The sources further claimed that the probing agency had phone records of the two Army officials suggesting their crucial role in the case.

The agency has registered a case naming Rishi and unnamed officials of the Defence Ministry, Army and BEML on March 30 for alleged criminal conspiracy, cheating and also under relevant sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The agency is probing alleged irregularities in assigning of supply from Czechoslovakia-based Tatra, with which the agreement was originally signed in 1986, to the Tatra-Sipox UK owned by Rishi in 1997 showing it as an original equipment manufacturer and the fully-owned subsidiary of Czech company, which was against the provisions of Defence Procurement Procedure, the sources said. The allegations of any wrong doing have been refuted by Rishi and Natarajan. 

It is noteworthy, this is for the first time that names of Army officials have surfaced in the Tatra case.