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TEHELKA: 20 crores.
R.K. JAIN: For me it was just half a per cent. [tehelka laughs]. I tried to explain Jaya-ji "I can do it in two per cent" because he said four per cent. Actually half a per cent that fellow took it to introduce me to Chaudhary. He was the middleman in between me and Chaudhary. He wanted half a per cent for himself. And I tried my best to tell Jaya-ji "Take two per cent." She said, "No, no, Jain, three per cent". She said, "Don't tell…unless and until they give three per cent." I said, "Okay, whatever you can…"

TEHELKA: So that was worth how much to you? Half a per cent of 600 crore?
R.K. JAIN: Nothing much.

[Both laugh]

TEHELKA: That's quite a lot of money.
R.K. JAIN: You see, the kind of…

TEHELKA (interrupts): Half a million dollars.
R.K. JAIN: Yeah. But you see, the place where you're sitting, you can make any amount of money you want. One deal of Sukhoi, one deal of air jet trainers and one big deal of submarines, or like…there was a…. In defence…deals are…all deals are, you know, 500 crore, 700 crore….

R.K. JAIN: Jaya Jaitly is the second wife. But not officially married to Jaya Jaitly. She's president of the party also. So there are two defence ministers. One is George Fernandes, another is Jaya Jaitly.

[Both laugh]

TEHELKA: That's cute. Very cute.
R.K. JAIN: And I am basically the front of Jaya Jaitly and George Fernandes. If you want, I can show you the minutes of the meetings. It is cyclostyled in our different conferences...national conferences, that whenever party needs money, Mr. Jain will have to arrange that money and give it to the party. That's the job of the national treasurer.

TEHELKA: Is there only one treasurer?
R.K. JAIN: Yeah. I can't say, "no". I am the only treasurer.

TEHELKA: How many funds...how much funds did you manage to generate for the party so far?
R.K. JAIN: Till now I think I'm worth…I have given them more than 50 crore rupees.

TEHELKA: Fifty crore rupees. And how much did you make for yourself? It's good business!

[Jain smiles. All laugh]

TEHELKA: No, he is our permanent consultant of West End International.
TEHELKA: Definitely, definitely. Yeah, yeah.

*  *  *

Time to move on from Jain. Coming to know that BJP President Bangaru Laxman had taken on himself the mantle of swinging corporate kickbacks, we looked at a way of approaching him in a costless manner. For a while RSS trustee R.K. Gupta was asking for a sum of Rs. 25 lakh for an introduction to Laxman and getting the job done. Sahni, the other defence middleman, himself had put a figure of Rs. 10 lakh. West End, obviously, had no budget of that kind. We talked to H.C. Pant. He offered first to take us to Saheb Singh Verma, BJP MP, who would then at a cost of Rs. 1 lakh take us to Laxman. Eventually, Pant sent Mohan Singh, PS to former Minister of State of Defence Hiren Pathak, to introduce us to Raju Venkatesh, Laxman's personal secretary. Venkatesh introduces us to Laxman. Here's the first meeting.

{Tehelka gets up to go to the room of Mr.Bangaru Laxman ]

TEHELKA: Sir, I am from West End International…
BANGARU LAXMAN: Hmm…hmm.

TEHELKA: So I am chief representative. It's written in my liaisoning this thing.
BANGARU LAXMAN: Hmm, hmm.

TEHELKA: …so we are interested in India investment. Around…we are interested in 2001 to 2002 around 5,000 crores. We already moved a proposal to PM that telling him that foreign direct investment. And we would like to introduce our night vision for defence….

[Pause]

TEHELKA: Can I show you? This is…this is the proposal.

[Camera moves up]

[Bangaru Laxman comes into frame]

TEHELKA: Sir, this is hand…. This is the material…. This is thermal…hand-held thermal camera.
BANGARU LAXMAN: Hmm…hmm.

TEHELKA: Already I talked to defence people…officers. Lt. Gen. [sic] Choudary.
BANGARU LAXMAN: Hmm.

TEHELKA: And Lt. Gen. Dhillon also.
BANGARU LAXMAN: Hmm.s

TEHELKA: So they are willing to take our item. It is a very good item, compared to CSF-Thomson and El-Op. They…they are our compet…competitors. That everything is set up there. Now I need…uh…your favour to Defence Secretary.

BANGARU LAXMAN: I know him…but…no…at what stage the proposal is?
TEHELKA: The proposal is…if Defence Secretary will send the…al…. Already the file is with the Defence Secretary. Already users…that means they will decide which item they will use or not. So they'll send the file to Defence Secretary.

BANGARU LAXMAN: Hmm.
TEHELKA: So what should we do, thinking on these lines. So if Defence Secretary will agree, so our company will be short-listed. We will get around 60 crores of rupees order.

BANGARU LAXMAN: Hmm…who are the people who…who will help this?
TEHELKA: Yeah.

BANGARU LAXMAN: I mean, there must be some committee which must have gone in.
TEHELKA: No, that is they've approved. That PNC will open January first week. Before we have…. Sir, there is one reason I'll tell you very frankly, openly. So in the bureaucratic and in the political level, they will not allow in the third company into the fray. Reason, two companies are already supplying.

The next meeting with BJP President Bangaru Laxman takes place in the
New Year. By now, the token advance of Laxman had been whittled down
by West End to Rs. 1 lakh from Rs. 5 lakh. This after presenting a gold chain
to his other secretary, Sathyamurthi, and a token amount of Rs. 10,000 to
Raju Venkatesh. All this for the sole purpose that they would project West
End as a very big and credible company to Bangaru Laxman . Credible, of course, in this context, meant the capacity to give huge kickbacks.
   
   
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