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Supreme Court On Rafale Deal

Supreme Court On Rafale Deal


GS 3 || Science & Technology  || Defence || Military Technology

Why in new? :

  • Supreme Court has given a clean chit to the decision-making followed by the government for the Rafale jet deal between India and France.
  • Delivering the Rafale verdict, a Supreme Court bench—headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi—dismissed petitions on three areas of concerns pertaining to the “decision making process, pricing and offsets”.

Supreme Court verdict :

  • There is no occasion to doubt the decision-making process in the deal.
  • There is a necessity to induct fourth and fifth generation fighter aircraft and the country cannot remain without these jets.
  • Not the court’s job to deal with the comparative details of the pricing when the need and quality of aircraft is not in doubt.
  • No substantial matter to interfere with the issue of procurement, pricing and offset partner.
  • No material to show that the deal is commercial favouritism.
  • No wrongdoing in the selection of Indian offset partners by Dassault Aviation.
  • Questions raised on Rafale deal only after ex-French President François Hollande came out with a statement, which can’t be the basis of judicial review.

What is the meaning of a 50% offset clause in the Rafale deal between the Indian and the French government?

  • The 50% offset clause in the Rafale deal states that French companies would have to invest 50% of the amount of the deal into joint venture with Indian private or government defence firms.
  • Since the Rafale deal was worth ₹62,800 Crores (€7.87 Billion) , Dassault is expected to invest around 50% of its share in joint venture with Indian firms. Reliance Defence had entered into agreement with Dassault for a joint venture, even before the Rafale deal was signed. Dassault is expected to sign more deals with other Indian firms like L&T defence, Kalyani Group, Mahindra Group, Godrej and Boyce, etc.


Prelims bits : About Rafale Aircraft

  • The Rafale is a 4th generation Aircraft with twin-engine, multi-role fighter aircraft. According to Dassault, it is capable of carrying out all combat missions: air defence, interception, ground support, in-depth strikes, reconnaissance, anti-ship strikes and nuclear deterrence.
  • Rafale provides standoff capability when any country attacks India. An active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar which enables the pilot to look 200 to 400 kms away. It gives long range precision strike capability, the pilot can detect enemy aircraft and share the information and also destroy the targets.
  • The 4th generation Aircraft capabilities involve Situational awareness in which Aircraft has got those sensors which enable the pilot to be aware situationally and detect the enemy Aircraft for which the Rafale has got AESA radar.
  • The weapons package includes Meteor radar guided Beyond Visual Range (BVR) missile considered the best in the class with range of over 150 km and Scalp long range air to ground missiles. The Rafale will also be fitted with MICA missiles, an Air to Land precision missile of more than 300 km range.
  • Today the warfare is beyond the range capability and not face to face.
  • This deal includes the cost of 36 Rafale fighters, the full weapons package, simulators, spares, maintenance, performance-based logistics, India-specific enhancements and associated supplies for five years.