Former union minister Arun Shourie addressing a press conference in New Delhi on Friday. Photo/ANI
Former union minister Arun Shourie addressing a press conference in New Delhi on Friday. Photo/ANI

SC judgment on Rafale shows state of constitutional institutions in country: Arun Shourie

ANI | Updated: Nov 15, 2019 17:28 IST

New Delhi [India], Nov 15 (ANI): Former union minister and disgruntled BJP leader Arun Shourie on Friday said that the Supreme Court judgment in the case pertaining to the Rafale deal reflects the state of constitutional institutions in the country.
"Our duty was to bring to fore the facts in the matter. If the institutions accept them and act accordingly, then it has served a limited purpose. However, when the facts are clear and the institution fabricates something else and does not proceed accordingly. Then, it has done a greater and general service by showing the nation the state of the court as well as all other institutions in the country like RBI, ED, ECI, etc," Shourie said at a press conference.
He said that the petitioners are happy that verdict gives them the opportunity to bring the matter to the attention of the people.
"The fact that the court gave such a ridiculous judgment gave us the opportunity to put further facts to the court through a review petition. The SC has not dealt with any of those facts and has hidden behind a 'burkha' (veil) of self-restraint," Shourie said.
He said that the amended Section 17A, along with the "self-imposed self-restraint of the Supreme Court not to go into sensitive matters" gives free rein to the government for wrongdoing in matters pertaining to national security.
"This is a dangerous combination," the former union minister said.
"We never questioned the technical capabilities of the aircraft. But the court says that we should not go into these details because we don't have the competence to look at the technical points and neither do the appellants," he said.
Shourie said that the defence secretary had written that the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) was holding parallel negotiations and jeopardising the stand of the Indian negotiating team.
"What is the problem in examining this particular fact? The anti-corruption clauses were also changed in the deal with retrospective effect," he said.
"You (Supreme Court) shut your eyes with so-called high-sounding self-restraint on sensitive matters and you misrepresent what has been told to you in writing and orally in front of the whole packed courtroom," Shourie added.
This comes after the Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed the review petitions challenging its verdict in the Rafale case on December 14, 2018.
A three-judge bench presided by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and comprising Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and K M Joseph had passed the order on a batch of petitions seeking review of its December 14, 2018 verdict which had upheld the purchase of 36 Rafale jets by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government from France. (ANI)