Aam Aadmi Party MP Sanjay Singh has sent a legal notice to Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman alleging large-scale scam in the purchase of Rafale fighter jets from France.
Terming the Rafale deal a ‘mega scam’, Singh on Tuesday demanded scrapping of the deal. He also threatened to approach the court if Sitharaman did not pay attention to his demands in three days, reported news agency IANS.
He also demanded barring of the private Indian firm, Anil Ambani’s Reliance, involved in the deal.
Singh’s 11-page notice, sent to Sitharaman read, “My client is constrained to issue this legal notice in the (Rafale Deal) matter due to your covert actions and deeds with regard to the pricing and induction of strategic partner of a company with zero credentials much to the detriment to the security of the nation.”
It added, “There has been a history of contradictory stands and statements taken and issued by the Ministry of Defence.”
Singh has also sent a copy of his legal notice to the Central Vigilance Commission and the Prime Minister.
The central government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has found itself in a real spot of bother after the former French President Francois Hollande revealed that it was the Indian government, which suggested the name of Anil Ambani to be the Indian offset partner in the Rafale deal.
Janta Ka Reporter in its three part series last had first exposed the scam in the purchase of Rafale jets from the French company Dassault aviation. (You can read them here Part 1 and Part 2 and Part 3).
In our expose, we had highlighted how the Modi government had junked the previous deal struck between the then UPA government and the French company Dassault Aviation to strike a new deal, which was considerably more expensive.
Key grounds that the Modi government allegedly lost to in the new deal was forgoing the clause on transfer of technology, while agreeing to pay nearly three times more money for each aircraft.
Another contentious point under the news deal was the joint venture struck between Anil Ambani’s newly formed defence company and Dassault Aviation. Under the old deal, being negotiated by the UPA government, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, was to get the contract for manufacturing the aircraft in India. The HAL has years of experience in manufacturing fighter jets.
The Congress-led UPA government had planned to buy 126 jets in accordance with the urgent requirement of the Air Force. The Modi government had unilaterally decided to bring down the numbers to just 36.