Supreme Court gives clean chit to Modi govt in Rafale deal. Confirms deal with India post-SC verdict

Even as two Members of Parliament gave an adjournment motion notice in the Lok Sabha on Monday over the Centre’s decision to buy 36 Rafale jets from French company Dassault Aviation, the combat aircraft maker has backed the Indian government's ‘Make in India’ proposition in its first-ever statement over the controversial deal.

While welcoming the Supreme Court verdict on the deal, which dismissed all petitions, the company, on December 14, reaffirmed its full commitment to India.

“Dassault Aviation will ensure successful production in the country, through the Dassault Reliance joint venture in Nagpur, as well as through a full-fledged supply chain network involving 30 (other) companies, with which Dassault Aviation has signed contracts,” it said, adding that the French company is in dialogue with an additional 60 companies to join its supply chain network.

No Red Flags

The Rafale contract signed on September 23, 2016, is in the form of an Inter-Governmental Agreement between India and France, the company said.

The estimated cost of the deal is ₹58,000 crore. The Rafale fighter is a twin-engine Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA).

Taking note of the Supreme Court’s conclusions establishing the absence of any irregularities in the decision-making process to purchase 36 Rafale jets, their pricing and the selection of Indian offset partners including Anil Ambani-owned Reliance Defence by Dassault Aviation, the French company said, it is “fully committed in a strong relationship of mutual trust with India for over 65 years” and that “all resources of Dassault Aviation are entirely mobilised to make the Rafale, chosen by India in 2012 following a very complete competitive bidding process and evaluation, the spearhead of the Indian Air Force.”

Adding the deal “is absolutely clean in accordance with Indian laws and regulations,” Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO, Dassault Aviation said in the statement that the first Falcon part is currently under delivery out of its facility in Nagpur.