14:04 GMT +319 April 2019
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    The Dassault Rafale fighter jet

    Relief for Indian Gov't as Supreme Court Refuses to Order Probe in Rafale Deal

    © AFP 2019 / MIGUEL MEDINA
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    India’s major opposition party the Indian National Congress had alleged there was a major scam in the procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets from France in 2016 under a government to government deal by the Narendra Modi government.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — The Supreme Court of India on Friday dismissed all petitions filed against the $8.7 billion Rafale fighter jet deal concluded with France under government-to-government negotiations in 2016. The Court said that there was no reason to doubt the process through which the Rafale deal was finalised.

    Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi chairing the three-judge bench said that country could not afford to be unprepared in defence matters, under which the acquisition of fighter aircraft falls, and that it can't sit in the appeal for every matter of such acquisitions. 

    READ MORE: India Makes $4 Bln Down Payment for Rafale Jets Despite Controversy– Sources

    "We find nothing amiss in the Rafale deal and find no evidence of favoritism of any kind," ruled the Supreme Court.

    Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said that the Court could not go into the wisdom of why the deal was made for 36 aircraft and not the original 126 aircraft. 

    "We cannot ask the government to go for 126 aircraft", the Court said. 

    READ MORE: Rafale Deal Takes Center Stage in Intense Infighting in India’s Top Probe Agency

    The Court has also cleared the selection of offset partner for the deal, a matter that had come under massive attack from the opposition parties. The opposition parties had claimed that the government had favoured private entities as offset partners in the deal. 

    The Indian National Congress claims that the price of each Rafale jet negotiated under the erstwhile government led by Manmohan Singh was INR 526 crore ($79.065 million, approx.) which,  under the present deal struck with France by the Modi government, has gone up to INR 1670 crore  ($251.024 million approx.)

    Related:

    Top Court Gives Indian Gov't 10 Days to Reveal Rafale Deal Details
    India Makes $4 Bln Down Payment for Rafale Jets Despite Controversy– Sources
    Rafale Deal Takes Center Stage in Intense Infighting in India’s Top Probe Agency
    Indian Defense Minister Heads to France as Court Seeks Details of Rafale Deal
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    opposition parties, Dassault Rafale, price, scam, Supreme Court, India, France
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