The court is hearing petitions, including those filed by former ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie, questioning the jet deal between India and France and the choice of Anil Ambani's inexperienced Reliance Defence as India partner for Rafale maker Dassault
New Delhi: The Supreme Court has asked the Centre to disclose information on Rafale deal, which can be legitimately put in public domain and information on induction of Indian offset partner and pricing details within 10 days.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi asked the government to furnish details of the decision-making process that led to the deal but had emphasised that it would not get into "pricing or suitability" of the jets.
"We would like the details of pricing and cost to be submitted to the Supreme Court in a sealed cover. This may be submitted in the next 10 days," said Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi.
The government, on its part, argued that the pricing was revealed in parliament, neither UPA II had disclosed such details. Chief Justice Gogoi said the government could file an affidavit or legal document in court.
The court is hearing petitions, including those filed by former Union Ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie, questioning the jet deal between India and France and the choice of Anil Ambani's inexperienced Reliance Defence as India partner for Rafale maker Dassault.
The judges said that the suitability of the jet and its utility has not been questioned. "What had been questioned is bonafide of the decision-making and price," they said.
Petitioners have asked for a court-monitored investigation into the Rs. 59,000 crore deal for 36 fighters from Dassault, announced in 2016 after Prime Minister Narendra Modi's talks in Paris with then French president Francois Hollande.
The opposition has accused the government of going for a not-so-favourable contract to benefit Anil Ambani. Both the government and the industrialist have denied the charge.
The previous Congress-led UPA government had negotiated with Dassault for 126 Rafale jets under which 18 jets were to be supplied in a fly-away condition and 108 were to be manufactured in India along with state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). However, the UPA could not seal the deal.
(With agency inputs)
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Last Updated 31, Oct 2018, 12:12 PM