The real war between BJP and Congress over the Rafale deal is really a war between two of the largest defence companies globally on Indian turf. IndianExpose correspondent Harshit Ramesh Tiwari investigates the war between the two defence companies and its repercussions to the Indian political scene…
India is currently the witness of one of the biggest controversies right now.
The Rafale fighter jet deal has constantly been in the news for all the wrong reasons.
The opposition parties are crying foul and are hell bent on proving that Prime Minister Modi has indulged in corruption by bypassing standard procurement procedures and opting for a government to government deal for the purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets in fly away condition.
We all know the background so let me get straight to the point. Are some influential people lobbying for the Eurofighter Typhoon by deliberately trying to hamper the Rafale procurement ? Let me answer.
Eurofighter Typhoon was one of the six aircrafts competing for the Indian MMRCA competition for 126 multi-role fighters. In April 2011, the Indian Air Force shortlisted the Dassault Rafale and Eurofighter Typhoon for the US $10.4 billion contract and on 31 January 2012, IAF announced the Rafale as the preferred bidder in the competition.
The Eurofighter is manufactured by a consortium of Airbus, BAE Systems and Leonardo that conducts the majority of the project through a joint holding company, Eurofighter Jagdflugzeug GmbH.
The aircraft’s development effectively began with the Future European Fighter Aircraft programme, a multinational collaboration among the UK, Germany, France, Italy and Spain. Disagreements over design authority and operational requirements led France to leave the consortium to develop the Dassault Rafale independently.
Keep connecting the dots as you proceed to read further. Notice Dassault’s departure and Airbus as one of the manufacturers of Eurofighter.
Eurofighter GmbH :
Eurofighter Jagdflugzeug GmbH is a multinational company that co-ordinates the design, production and upgrade of the Eurofighter Typhoon, this includes incorporating the jet engines designed and manufactured by EuroJet Turbo GmbH.
Founded in 1986, it has its head office in Hallbergmoos, Bavaria, Germany. The company is owned by the major aerospace companies of the four Eurofighter partner nations:
46%: Airbus Defence and Space (then known as EADS) (Germany and Spain),
33%: BAE Systems Military Air & Information (United Kingdom),
21%: Leonardo (Italy). Notice Leonardo of Italy.
￼Leonardo, formerly Leonardo-Finmeccanica and Finmeccanica, is an Italian global high-tech company. Headquartered in Rome, the company has 180 sites worldwide. It is the ninth largest defence contractor in the world based on 2016 revenues. The company is partially owned by the Italian government through the Ministry of Economy and Finance, which holds 30.2% of the company’s shares and is its largest shareholder.
On 1 January 2016, Leonardo-Finmeccanica became a single industrial company by integrating the activities of its subsidiaries AgustaWestland, Alenia Aermacchi, DRS Technologies, Selex ES, Oto Melara and WASS. Notice Finmeccanica and AgustaWestland.
We all know what Finmeccanica and AgustaWestland are, thanks to a political family and an infamous defence middleman, Christian Michel.
AgustaWestland and Finmeccanica are subsidiaries of Leonardo, which is an Italian company and the political family also happens to have some special relation with the land.
Leonardo and Dassault are direct rivals ever since Dassault recused itself from the production of Eurofighter Typhoon in 1986. India is the world’s largest importer of defence equipments so it is obvious for every multinational defence company to gun for contracts in India.
We are all aware of shady, unethichal practices which rival corporations often apply to snatch business from each other. It is highly plausible that one or more of the 5 companies which were defeated by Dassault in the MMRCA Tender competition may be involved in pushing an anti Dassault, anti Rafale movement in India.
Keep in mind that the Govt of India has plans to procure another 110 fighter jets for our Air Force. The same six fighter jets which were involved in the MMRCA 1 will be competing against each other again to secure the MMRCA 2 deal.
Rafale and Eurofighter Typhoon were the L1 and L2 bidders so if Rafale is somehow knocked out of the competition, then Eurofighter Typhoon will automatically have an edge over the other 4 fighter jets. A Request for Information (RFI) has already been sent out to all the companies by the Indian Air Force .
Connect all the dots now:
The opposition has tried every possible trick but have failed miserably in proving that the ‘Chowkidar is a Chor’.
The very fact that the Chief of the Air Staff has to come out in public to defend the worthiness of Rafale jets is a matter of great shame.
The opposition has crossed all the limits, they’ve called the Air Chief a liar, called the CAG a “Chowkidar Auditor General”, called the Defence Minister a liar, called the Prime Minister a thief, a traitor and what not.
They went a step further and called the Prime Minister a spy. They even questioned the credibility of the Supreme Court of India which gave a clean chit to the Narendra Modi government.
Why do they want a JPC even after the Supreme Court’s judgement and the CAG investigative report which will be tabled in the parliament in the next few days?
Are some people lobbying for the Eurofighter Typhoon for MMRCA 2 and trying to transmit the confidential details of the Rafale deal to Pakistan and China at the same time?
Are there some people desperate to know the confidential details of the Rafale deal and configurations of the aircraft?
Why does Pakistani Media demand a JPC?
All these questions point of to the fact that this battle is not a political battle of right or wrong, it is a business battle of two defence companies, wherein one company did not get the contract is trying to muscle the political class and create a false perception using a political entity to discredit the government or pressurise the government into accepting its bid in the next round.