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Rafale jet deal: Centre submits decision-making process before SC

ANI | Updated: Nov 12, 2018 19:03 IST

New Delhi [India], Nov 12 (ANI): The union government on Monday submitted details of its decision-making process in the Rafale aircraft deal to the Supreme Court. In its affidavit, the government said that all the requisite steps as per the requirement of Defence Procurement Procedure 2013 were followed while procuring the fighter planes.
The Centre stated that unnecessary controversy is being sought to be created regarding the selection of Reliance Defence deal and added that the rules laid down by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government were only being followed by the present National Democratic Alliance (NDA) Government.
The Centre added that all requisite steps like preparation of Services Qualitative Requirements, approval of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC), technical evaluation and acceptance of technically qualified platform were duly followed during the procurement of the fighter planes.
The government said that as per defence offset guidelines, the foreign original equipment manufacturer is free to select any Indian company as its offset partner. It added that Government has no role in the selection of Indian offset partner which is a commercial decision of the Original Equipment Manufacturer, the Union government stated in its reply to petitioners.
The case is likely to come up for hearing before the Apex court on Wednesday.
On October 27, the Centre submitted the details of the decision-making process pertaining to the Rafale deal to the Court Secretary-General in a sealed cover. In 2012, during the United Progressive Alliance's (UPA) tenure, India planned to buy 18 off-the-shelf jets from France, with 108 others to be assembled in the country by the state-run aerospace and defence company Hindustan Aeronautics Limited. While the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led central government scrapped the UPA's plan and announced that it would buy 36 "ready-to-fly" Rafale jets from French aerospace major Dassault Aviation.
The opposition Congress party has been accusing the Centre of irregularities in the high-profile Defence fighter jets contract, alleging that the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government was procuring aircraft at a cost of over Rs 1,670 crore each as against Rs 526 crore finalized by the UPA government. (ANI)