Displaying its tough stance against tainted firms, the Defence Ministry has decided to keep 27 Indian and foreign firms including those facing CBI inquiries out of its biennial military exhibition starting February 6.
A decision has been taken to keep 27 firms out of the Defexpo 2014 which includes 15 firms which are facing CBI inquiry and 12 firms that have already been blacklisted, Defence Ministry sources told PTI here.
The 15 firms facing the CBI inquiry include Anglo-Italian firm AgustaWestland and several Indian firms including some Bangalore-based IT and engineering firms, they said.
The Defence Ministry has kept AgustaWestland's parent company Finmeccannica out of the show along with its other group companies including Selex, Alenia Armacchi, Oto Malera and WASS.
It has also put on hold a proposal for procuring torpedos from WASS group of Italy after clearing it on December 23, around a week before cancelling the AgustaWestland chopper contract.
India scrapped the contract on January 1 after finding that AgustaWestland allegedly breached the pre-contract integrity pact (PCIP) in the deal for supplying 12 VVIP choppers to the Air Force.
It is learnt that Finmeccanica has already paid the participation fees for the show and this would be returned to it shortly through online banking procedures, they said.
The Ministry has a clear policy that firms having corruption cases pending against them or if they are already blacklisted, would not be allowed to take part in the exhibition, where more than 455 companies are expected to participate this year.
It is also in the process of consulting the Law Ministry and the CBI on the issue of blacklisting AgustaWestland and its group companies in the defence sector.