New Delhi, Nov 15 (PTI) The CPI(M) Thursday demanded a Supreme Court-monitored SIT probe into the Rafale deal, claiming that “new facts” are coming out on the “irregularities” in clinching of the agreement.
The CPI(M)’s attack came a day after the government told the Supreme Court that no “sovereign guarantee” was given by the French government on the deal for procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets.
In the Rafale deal, the most “sensational” thing is the government’s own admission in the apex court that there was no sovereign guarantee from the French government, but only a letter of comfort, which is not legally enforceable to ensure the delivery of this high value contract, CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury told reporters.
On the price of the aircraft, the government stated in March 2018 that the cost of the basic aircraft is Rs 670 crores per plane, Yechury said.
But, in September 2016, the government had pointed out that it was Rs 60,000 crore for 36 aircraft, including all modifications, making it Rs 1,600 crore per plane, the CPI (M) leader said.
Yechury said the CEO of French company Dassault, which is manufacturing the Rafale aircraft, is now saying that the price of 36 fly away planes is equal to 18 fly away ordered in the deal earlier “These figures obviously do not corroborate. New facts are coming out on the irregularities of the government in clinching the Rafale deal,” he said.
“Nothing less than a Supreme Court-monitored SIT probe can bring out the truth and fix accountability. This is of paramount importance in the interest of the nation and particularly, the security of the country,” Yechury said.
His remarks came amid the opposition escalating its attack on the government over allegations of corruption in the Rafale deal.
The government has vehemently denied all the charges.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.