Rafale Deal Essay

Rafale Deal Essay is one of the most hot topic for discussion as the president of oldest national political party is crying over this issue and making headlines in this election year. So what is all about Rafale Deal Essay

What was the Rafale Deal?

In April 2015, during PM Modi’s visit to France, he suddenly announced a deal to buy 36 Rafale aircrafts in a fly-away deal, in a government to government deal owing to the need for fighter aircrafts. A few days later, the then Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar told the parliament of having cancelled the negotiation process which was on for 126 Rafale fighters, initiated by UPA government in 2008. The new deal worth Rs. 59000 crores for the outright purchase of 36 aircrafts is now in the eye of a storm.

The controversy over it for Rafale Deal Essay

Questions have been raised regarding the need to discard the negotiations for the acquisition for 126 Rafale aircrafts from Dassault and opt instead for the outright purchase of 36 aircrafts of the same make from the same company. Opposition parties have alleged that the NDA government is buying the same aircrafts under the new deal at a much higher price than the one that was negotiated earlier by the UPA government. Opposition has also alleged that the contours of the current deal favour a particular Indian private defence company. In the older proposal, 108 out of 126 aircrafts were to be assembled by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. The NDA government refused to share specifics regarding the deal.

Are costs related to defence deals shared with the Parliament?

In several cases, costs have been shared. In other cases, those details are kept secret for reasons of national security. Government is bound to share pricing details with CAG and PAC of Parliament. Now, as the two prices are in different timeframes, the weaponry available on both is different and different guarantees are associated with the aircrafts. As a result, a direct comparison cannot be made.

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Merits of buying 36 aircrafts in a fly-away condition for Rafale Deal Essay

Government of India stated that due to the declining squadron strength of the Indian Air Force, they considered buying the aircrafts in fly-away condition. However, these aircrafts were primarily bought to deliver nuclear weapons.

Is the accusation of the deal benefitting a private company?

The Ministry of Defence plays no role in selection of the assembling partner. This is at the sole discretion of Dassault. Though it is true that this private Indian company has no experience in defence manufacturing.

Concluding remarks

The Defence Minister held a press conference to clarify the controversies surrounding this deal. The government made a string statement that it purchased these aircrafts at a better, cheaper deal than the previous ones. This makes it imperative for the government to release certain figures to substantiate its claim. The real impact of this controversy is that it is a setback for the defence procurement process.

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