Chinese Minister gifts cash to IAF pilots

Last Updated: Thu, Sep 06, 2012 00:13 hrs

Chinese Defence Minister Gen Liang Guanglie had handed out Rs 1 lakh to two Indian Indian Air Force (IAF) pilots sent to ferry him in what was reported as a major breach of protocol on Wednesday.

Two Embraer and an Avro aircraft were sent to Mumbai to fetch the delegation to Delhi for delegation-level talks.

According to custom, the visiting delegation usually gifts mementos as tokens of appreciation to the aircrew and money is usually never handed over.

However, the Chinese delegation apparently handed over two packets of Rs 50,000 each to each of the IAF pilots.

Realising that he had received cash, one of the pilots informed the IAF headquarters which in turn has written to Ministry of Defence and the money shall now be deposited in the government treasury on Thursday, reports said.

The Chinese defence minister along with senior dignitaries and officials from the People's Republic of China on Wednesday visited the National Defence College.

This is the first time since its inception in 1960 that such a high level military delegation from China visited the College.

After a brief interaction with the Commandant Air Marshal PK Roy the delegation was briefed in detail on the history, role, academic and research activities at higher learning levels in national security and strategic affairs at the premier institution.

The Defence Minister and his entourage were subsequently taken on a tour of the College and shown various facilities.

The Chinese Defence Minister expressed keen interest in the scope and training methodology at the College.

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