LM NEWS 24
LM NEWS 24

'What about the loot?' Rahul in Rafale zone

Can you explain “Reliance” on someone with nil experience in aerospace for Rafale deal?

— Office of RG (@OfficeOfRG) November 16, 2017 This wasn’t the first time that the Congress has invaded Rafale airspace. Earlier this week, Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala alleged at a press conference that the Modi government has violated the defence procurement procedure (DPP) in its Rafale deal. “On April 10, Prime Minister Modi visits France and announces the deal for purchase of 36 Rafale fighter aicraft in flyaway condition. This was done unilaterally without following the DPP, without any inter-governmental agreement and in the absence of India’s Defence Minister. However, Mr. Anil Ambani, owner of Reliance Defence Limited was present in France during the Prime Minister’s visit,” Surjewala said. After the BJP-led NDA government took over in May 2014, the earlier Request for Proposal (RFP) for purchase of 126 aircraft was cancelled on July 30, 2015, and a deal was signed the next year for procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets for $8.7 billion, Surjewala said, adding that Anil Ambani’s Reliance Defence Limited then tied up on October 3, 2016 with Dassault Aviation, the French manufacturer of the Rafale, for an Indian joint venture. Under India’s offset clause, a foreign defence company must invest half of the value of the deal it makes with New Delhi back into India. The Reliance Defence-Dassault joint venture is thus positioned to become a local part of the Rafale supply chain as well as benefit from future orders. The BJP had then said that the allegations are “baseless and unfounded”. Reliance Defence Limited, a part of the Anil Ambani-headed Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group, had responded by asking the Congress to correct its facts or face legal action. “Government policy issued on 24 June 2016 allows for 49% FDI in the Defence Sector under the automatic route, without any prior approval. No approvals from the Union Cabinet or CCS were required for the formation of the aforesaid Joint Venture company under the automatic route,” Reliance Defence Limited said in a statement. About the presence of Anil Ambani in France during Prime Minister Modi’s April 2015 visit when the new Rafale deal was first announced, it said: “Shri Anil Ambani is a member of Indo French CEO Forum. In the said meeting, more than 20 CEOs were present.” Surjewala had also said that the joint venture helped Reliance get business (under the offset clause) worth ?30,000 crore. to this Reliance Defence said: “Offsets of Rs. 30,000 Cr. covers obligations of other OEMs including Thales, Safran & MBDA and not of Dassault alone. Over 500 large, medium and small Indian companies will benefit from the offsets which are nothing but an export obligation for goods and services from India.” (with IANS) //

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