The Rafale deal started with the procurement of 126 fighter jets which gradually switched to a 36 fighter jet deal. It all started on December 30, 2002, when Defence Procurement Procedures (DPP) were adopted to streamline procurement procedures.
In the file photo, a French Rafale aircraft after landing.
On 28 August 2007, the Ministry of Defence issued a Request for Proposal for procurement of 126 MMRCA (medium multi-role combat aircraft) fighters jets.
In the file photo, a French Dassault Rafale during the Frisian Flag exercise.
Three years later in May 2011, the Indian Air Force (IAF) shortlists Rafale and Eurofighter jets for the air force. On 30 January 2012, the French-based company Dassault Aviation's Rafale aircraft comes up with the lowest bid and gradually the shift focuses from 126 aircraft to 36 aircraft.
On March 13, 2014, a work share agreement gets signed between HAL and Dassault Aviation under which they were responsible for 70 per cent and 30 per cent of the work, respectively, for the 108 Rafale fighter jets.
On August 8, 2014, the then defence minister Arun Jaitley informs the Parliament that 18 direct ‘fly-away’ aircraft were expected to be delivered in 3-4 years from signing of the contract. Remaining 108 aircraft to be delivered in the next seven years.
On April 8, 2015, the then foreign secretary said that detailed discussions were underway between Dassault, MoD and HAL. Two days later on April 10, 2015, a new deal for the acquisition of 36 direct ‘fly-away’ aircraft from France was announced.
In the file photo, a French Rafale jet at Aero India 2013.
On January 26, 2016, India and France signed a MoU for 36 Rafale aircraft. 8 months later on September 23, 2016, an Inter-governmental agreement was signed. Two months later on November 18, 2016, the Government informed the Parliament that the cost of each Rafale aircraft to be approximately Rs 670 crore and that all aircraft will be delivered by April 2022.
In the file photo, Indian Parliament in New Delhi.
On December 31, 2016, Dassault Aviation’s Annual Report revealed that the actual price paid for the 36 aircraft was at about Rs 60,000 crore, more than double the government’s stated price before the Indian Parliament. Pic Credit: Dassault Aviation Twitter
On March 13 2018, a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) was filed before the Supreme Court seeking an independent probe into Centre's (Modi Government) decision to procure 36 Rafale fighter jets from France and disclosure of the cost involved in the deal before the Parliament. Later the Supreme Court agreed to hear the PIL seeking a stay on Rafale fighter jet deal and on September 18, 2018, the apex court adjourned the hearing on PIL seeking a stay on Rafale fighter jet deal to October 10.
On October 8, 2018, the apex court agreed to hear a fresh PIL seeking direction to Centre to file in "sealed cover" the details of the agreement for buying 36 Rafale fighter Jets. Two days later, the Supreme Court asked the Centre to provide details of the decision-making process in the Rafale fighter jet deal in a sealed cover. Representational Picture
On October 24, 2018, Former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie and activist-lawyer Prashant Bhushan moved SC, seeking registration of FIR into Rafale fighter jet deal. One week later, on October 31, 2018, the SC asked the Centre to place before it in a sealed cover within 10 days the pricing details of 36 Rafale fighter jets.
In the file photo, activist-lawyer Prashant Bhushan, Arun Shourie and Former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha.
On November 12, 2018, the Modi Government placed the price details of 36 Rafale fighter jets in a sealed cover before the Supreme Court. Apparently, the sealed cover also comprised details of the steps that led to the finalisation of the Rafale deal.
Two days later after the Centre procured the details of the Rafael deal before the apex court, the court reserved its order on pleas seeking a court-monitored probe in Rafale deal.
On December 14, 2018, the Supreme Court in its epic judgement said that there is no occasion to doubt the decision-making process of the Modi government and dismissed all the petitions seeking direction to the CBI to register an FIR for alleged irregularities in the jet deal. The Cheif Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi-led bench found no cause to interfere with the deal and said that the procedure was ‘broadly’ followed.
BJP President Amit Shah welcomed the Supreme Court's decision and said that the “truth has triumphed.” He further said, "Rahul Gandhi should apologise to the nation for misleading people."
On December 20, 2018, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa welcomed the Supreme Court verdict on Rafale jet deal and said the Indian Air Force needs the fighter aircraft badly. Addressing the media during his visit to Air Force Station at Jodhpur, he said, "The Supreme Court has given a very fine judgement and I am not going to comment on it. It has also said that this plane is badly needed. Rafale is always a need for the Air Force. It (fighter jets) took a long time to come. Others have upgraded their squadron. Also, very fine comments are given by the Finance Minister (Arun Jaitley) and our Defence Minister (Nirmala Sitharaman).
Following is the chronology of events pf the Rafael Deal case, which is considered as one of the biggest political controversies in India's political history. On December 14, 2018, the Supreme Court gave the Narendra Modi government a clean chit in the procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets from France and dismissed all the petitions seeking a direction to the CBI to register an FIR for alleged irregularities in the deal. The deal started with the procurement of 126 fighter jets and switched to a 36 fighter jet deal later. Here's all you need to know about the Rafel Deal case and the chronology of events of the deal.
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