Dassault Rafael fighter jets (File photo)
Dassault Rafael fighter jets (File photo)

India-specific enhancements in Rafale plane to help achieve superiority over adversaries: Defence Ministry

ANI | Updated: Jan 18, 2019 20:04 IST

New Delhi [India], Jan 18 (ANI): Dismissing media reports suggesting that advancements sought by the Narendra Modi-government has shot the price of a Rafale planes by 41 per cent as "factually inaccurate", the Defence Ministry on Friday said the India specific enhancements would help the Indian Air Force achieve superiority over the adversaries.
"The article is factually inaccurate. It does not adduce any new arguments. All the issues have been answered in detail by the Government at various fora and most recently by the Raksha Mantri in an open debate in the Parliament," a Defence Ministry spokesperson said.
He said the India Specific Enhancements (ISE) were part of the requirements of the Indian Air Force to achieve tactical superiority over our adversaries.
The Ministry said the ISE were part of the 2007 bid (negotiated by the UPA) and continued to be part of the 2016 deal.
"The cost of the ISE was on a fixed basis in the 2007 bid which was negotiated down in the 2016 deal. However, to compare the cost for the MMRCA contract which never materialised with the cost of the 36 aircrafts procured in 2016 is fallacious," the spokesperson said.
The author, the Ministry said, while indicating the price of ISE as 1.4 billion Euro in 2007 but has failed to include the in-built escalation factor that would have worked between 2007 and 2015.
The ministry reiterated that the deal for the purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets in 2016 achieved the objectives of better price, better delivery period and better terms compared to the earlier proposal.
The Ministry said the pricing details of the Rafale deal were shared with the Supreme Court in a sealed cover.
"The Supreme Court has gone through the details of pricing and commercial advantage. The Supreme Court has not found anything adverse in the deal and has refused to order an investigation as sought by the Petitioners," it said.
The CAG has been given access to all the files related to Rafale deal. It is best to await the report of an authoritative agency like the CAG, the spokesperson said.
The Ministry said the media report has also "missed the main advantage in terms of price obtained by the government in 2016 deal which was mentioned by the Defence Minister in Parliament."
"This change from a firm and fixed price to a flexible rate was possible only because the deal was structured under an IGA. This factor is expected to lead to a substantial commercial advantage over the delivery period of 36 Rafale aircraft," the spokesperson said.
On the issue of dissent within the Indian Negotiated Team for the 36 Rafale deal, the Ministry said that in the "highest traditions of the Civil Service, all views are aired and recorded and a collegiate decision taken after considering such opinions. Decisions on the deal were taken after due process of inter-ministerial consultation."
On the issue of not accepting the EADS offer of 20 percent discount, the Ministry said that even the UPA Government had rightly rejected the EADS offer of 20 per cent discount in 2012 after opening of bids as violative of procedure.
"Consideration of this offer by the Government would have again made the Government subject to charge of violating basic procedure," the Ministry stated
The spokesperson said that It was "best to avoid the pitfalls of a corporate battle which has been going on since 2012 which has adversely affected the capabilities of the Indian Air Force. The controversy should be put to rest in the interest of national security." (ANI)

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