New Delhi(web team): Controversial BJP leader Subramanian Swamy on Friday had threatened to take legal recourse if government goes ahead with Rafale jet deal with France, saying there were shortcomings in the fighter aircraft.
However, PM Narendra Modi on Friday announced that India will buy 36 Rafale fighter jets in flyaway condition from France “as soon as possible”.
India will buy 36 Rafale fighter jets in flyaway condition from France “as soon as possible” after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and French President Francois Hollande on Friday night agreed to conclude an Inter-Governmental Agreement bypassing the protracted negotiations for purchase of 126 such jets.
“Keeping in view the critical operational necessity of fighter aircraft in India, I have asked President to provide 36 Rafale jets in fly-away condition as quickly as possible after agreements between both countries,” Modi announced at a joint news conference with Hollande after their summit talks at Elysee Palace.
Meanwhile, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said ,Rafale fighter jets will be inducted in IAF in a span of two years. “India has finally broken the ice over the deal which has been pending for the last 17 years,” Parrikar added.
Swamy on Friday, taking to micro-blogging site had tweeted, “I may have to go to court if the government clears the Raffale deal in which TDK got a hefty bribe. Better we buy Dassault company than that.”
Swamy, National Executive member of the party, had requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi not to go ahead with the Rafale deal, which was negotiated by the previous UPA government, and said the performance of the French jet “turned out to be worst of all the aircraft” in Libya and Egypt.
“There are two major issues with the Rafale Aircraft deal which would embarrass the BJP government. The first is that Rafale is less fuel efficient aircraft and lacking in essential performance characteristic that no country in the world has agreed to buy these aircraft,” Swamy said in a statement.
“If the Prime Minister for some other ‘compulsion’ decides to go ahead with the deal, I will have no option but to approach the court in PIL to get it set aside,” he said.
The statement further said that some countries have cancelled contract after signing an MoU with Dassault.
“It is a fact that Dassault will go bankrupt if no country buys the Rafale and we want to oblige the French goodwill, it is better to buy Dassault itself rather than their planes as it will be more beneficial,” the leader added.
India already has previous ties with Dassault, having bought Mirage 2000 fighter jets. In March, Dassault delivered two modernised Mirage jets to India.
(with agencies input)