In a big blow to Congress President Rahul Gandhi and United Opposition, the Supreme Court has dismissed the plea seeking a court-monitored probe into the purchase of multi-billion Rafale fighter jet deal.
The bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi, Justice SK Kaul and Justice KM Joseph said the court is satisfied with the process of the deal. “We studied the materials carefully, interacted with Defence officials, we are satisfied with the decision-making process and there is no reason to doubt the process,” Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi said, while dismissing the petitions.
The Apex Court further said it finds no reason to interfere in the government contract with France’s Dassault Aviation. It adds that the perception of individuals cannot form the basis for interference and also stated that it is not the job of the court to interfere in the choice of offset partner and that the court can’t compel the government to purchase 126 aircraft — the deal negotiated by the UPA government — or compare pricing details
The bench even praised PM Modi Government for the deal and said there is financial advantage in the NDA’s deal. The earlier deal, negotiated by the UPA government, was not forthcoming.
The petitions challenging the deal were filed by the activist and lawyer Prashant Bhushan, former Union ministers Arun Shourie and Yashwant Sinha, Aam Aadmi Party Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh and advocates ML Sharma and Vineet Dhanda earlier this year.
They had questioned the deal over the lack of transparency over the pricing of the jets; an offsets deal that seemed to favour a private firm; flouting of due process in closing the deal; and that the deal isn’t a government-to-government deal at all as it has been pitched because France refused to offer India a sovereign guarantee and instead gave it a letter of comfort.
The National Democratic Alliance (NDA) has always denied all these allegations. The government earlier said it cannot disclose pricing details publicly on account of a secrecy clause in its agreement with France and to ensure India’s enemies do not get to know details of the India-specific enhancements and weaponry of the Rafale. It had submitted details of the price in a sealed envelope to the Supreme Court, though, and the court said it would not get into the pricing issue.The government has also explained the process followed in an affidavit filed to the court, which has also been shared with the petitioners.
But still opposition was raising this matter again and again just to spread lies and create hype around the people that something is fishy and Modi Government is cheating.All the allegations levelled by the Congress are baseless and just for political mileage. Now this shameful campaign of Congress must end. It is enough now
Source : Indian Express