Quoting a dissent note by three members of the negotiating team published that, Congress president Rahul Gandhi said it demolished the two key factors of price and speedy delivery of aircraft on which the government’s entire argument for the new Rafale deal was based. Even if the CAG finding that the deal was 2.86% cheaper than the previous one was taken to be true, it belied the government’s claim about a 9% to 20% reduction, he said.
Mr. Gandhi said the argument given by the Prime Minister, the Defence Minister and the Finance Minister on the need for a new deal was based on the issue of price and that the Air Force required the planes quickly.
However, three members of the negotiating team in their eight-page dissent note had said the updated financial statement of Dassault Aviation revealed that the company had a backlog for 83 Rafale aircraft.
“At the production rate of eight aircraft per year, the company would take at least 10 years to complete its present backlog,” Mr. Gandhi said.
He questioned why the dissent note was not included in the CAG audit report, which was tabled in Parliament on Wednesday.