CAG on Rafale Deal: "It is a very strange report," says Congress leader

Earlier in the day, Rahul had also held a press conference on Rafale deal, where he showed a printout of an email and said, "The email clearly shows that Anil Ambani knew of the deal 10 days before it was signed. The Airbus CEO has already informed him. The prime minister is acting as Anil Ambani's middleman."

Saima Siddiqui

Saima SiddiquiBy Saima Siddiqui

Published on 13 Feb 2019 7:47 AM GMT

CAG on Rafale Deal: It is a very strange report, says Congress leader
CAG Rafale report: "It is a very strange report," says Congress leader
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New Delhi: The Former union minister and Congress leader Manish Tewari, on the last sitting of the 16th Lok Sabha, said that though he hasn't gone through the full report but what he has observed it is a very strange report.

He said, " I have not read the report but from what I have gathered, it is a very strange report. The CAG performs three kinds of audit. Perhaps this is the first report that has not gone into the pricing aspect. This report is not worth paper it is printed on."

Highlights of the Debate from February 13:

--The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 and The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2018 lapsed, as not cleared by Rajya Sabha. The bills were, however, passed by the Lok Sabha earlier.

-Rajya Sabha Chairman and Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu adjourned the House sine die.

-The House sat in 18 sessions since June 2014, since the National Democratic Alliance (NDA)’s tenure began.

-"It’s the last day of the Parliament so we prayed to Bapu (Mahatma Gandhi) that remove BJP and Modi babu and save the country. Keep everybody safe,West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee.

-With paper planes, Congress MPs protest outside Parliament over Rafale deal.

-Prior to adjournment, the Rajya Sabha passed the Interim Budget 2019-20, Appropriation and Finance Bills without debate. It also passed the Motion of Thanks on the President's Address.

-The Rajya Sabha has been adjourned till 12.30 pm amid ruckus from Opposition MPs.

-The CAG report has said that the fly away price of the jet is same as agreed in the 2007 by the UPA government.

-The report suggests that a Defence Ministry team in March 2015 had recommended scrapping of the 126 jet deal saying that Dassault Aviation was not the lowest bidder and EADS (European Aeronautic Defence & Space Company) was not fully compliant with the tender requirements.

-It also suggests that the delivery schedule of the first 18 Rafale aircraft is better than what was proposed in the 126 aircraft deal, by five months.

-The Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha have convened.

-West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has arrived at Parliament.

-Union Minister Arun Jaitley has reacted to the CAG report that mentions the Rafale deal

-Jaitley has said in a series of tweets: “Satyameva Jayate – the truth shall prevail. The CAG Report on Rafale reaffirms the dictum. 2016 vs. 2007 terms – Lower price, faster delivery, better maintenance, lower escalation. It cannot be that the Supreme Court is wrong, the CAG is wrong and only the dynast is right. How does democracy punish those who consistently lied to the nation? The lies of ‘Mahajhootbandhan’ stand exposed by the CAG Report.”

-While the CAG report is around 140 pages long, around 30 are focused on the Rafale deal.

-The report looks at 11 deals (five from the UPA era and six from the NDA era) -- all of which were signed between 2012 and 2017.

-Prices had been redacted only in the Rafale report, media reports add.

-India managed to save 17.08 percent money for the India Specific Enhancements in the 36 Rafale aircraft contract, as compared to the 126 aircraft deal proposed earlier, according to the CAG report.

-The CAG, in the report, has observed that unnecessary India-specific enhancements were made in 2016, according to a report.

-According to a report, the CAG report has said that the Rafale deal concluded in 2016 was 2.8 percent cheaper than the 2007 deal, and not 9 percent cheaper as claimed by the government.

-The Rajya Sabha has been adjourned till 12.00 pm.

-Pon Radhakrishnan has tabled the CAG report -- Air Force, Performance Audit on “Capital Acquisition in Indian Air Force”.

-The CAG report is likely to be tabled today in Parliament.

-Congress President Rahul Gandhi on CAG report on Rafale deal to be presented before Parliament today: I will be doing a press conference later in detail.

The Rajya Sabha will convene at 11.00 am.

-The key developments are likely to come from the Rajya Sabha. Two key bills -- The Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 and The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Bill, 2018 will lapse if not passed by the Upper House today.

Highlights of the Debate on February 12:

-The Comptroller and Auditor (CAG) financial audit report of the accounts of the union government was tabled in the Upper house of the Parliament, on Tuesday, but it had no mention of Rafale deal. The CAG report was presented to the President of India on Monday.

-The CAG document, titled 'Capital Acquisitions of the Indian Air Force', runs into two volumes and one volume talks about the Rafale deal and has detail description of pricing and the acquisition process of the deal.

-Moments after the House convened, the Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day. The next sitting will be at 11.00 am tomorrow.

-The Rajya Sabha has convened again.

-A CAG financial audit report of the accounts of the union government has been tabled in Parliament. However, it does not mention the Rafale deal, according to reports.

-The Rajya Sabha has been adjourned till 2.36 pm over ruckus.

-Protests continue in the Well of the House over Akhilesh Yadav being stopped stopped at the Lucknow airport.

-The Rajya Sabha has convened.

-Rahul Gandhi rejects CAG's report on the Rafale deal, dubbing it 'Chowkidar Auditor General' report.

-The revised list of business for the Lok Sabha still does not mention the CAG report on the Rafale deal.

-The Rajya Sabha has been adjourned till 2 pm.

-Referring to an email, Congress party president Rahul Gandhi, on Tuesday, during the parliamentary debate on 1,600 crores Rafale deal scam, alleged that PM Modi worked as Anil Ambani’s “middleman” and blames him for breaching the Official Secrets Act.

-Earlier in the day, Rahul had also held a press conference on Rafale deal, where he showed a printout of an email and said, "The email clearly shows that Anil Ambani knew of the deal 10 days before it was signed. The Airbus CEO has already informed him. The prime minister is acting as Anil Ambani's middleman."

-Rahul Gandhi alleged that according to the email Anil Ambani visited the Minister's office, met French Defence Officials, mentioned MoU in preparation and intention to sign during the prime minister’s visit. How is Anil Ambani meeting the French Defence Minister prior to PM's visit?: Rahul Gandhi asked.

-“Defence Minister says he does not know about the new deal, whereas Anil Ambani is sitting in the French Defence Minister's office saying PM will sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with him involved. This is the breach of the Official Secrets Act,” Rahul Gandhi has claimed

-Congress' Mallikarjun Kharge dared the government to order a JPC probe in the Rafale deal, before staging a walkout in protest.

-The parliament has been adjourned.

-Congress President Rahul Gandhi addressing a press conference on the Rafale deal.

-Meanwhile, Opposition MPs in Lok Sabha are raising slogans seeking Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC)'s scrutiny of the Rafale deal.

-The prime minister is doing something that spies do. The PM is under oath to protect these secrets. This violation should put PM in jail: Gandhi

-“It was PM Modi who told Anil Ambani about the deal. It was after Anil Ambani's conversation with the prime minister that he opened his defence company.”: Rahul

-Reliance Defence denies any wrongdoing in the Rafale deal.

-The Lok Sabha has been adjourned till 11.45 pm after sloganeering by Opposition members.

-Opposition MPs protest tabling of the CAG report on Rafale.

-The CAG report on the Rafale deal is now expected to be tabled by 12.00 pm.

-Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad has requested the House to run for 8-9 hours today to discussion the President’s address and the Interim Budget.

-Union Minister Vijay Goel has proposed extension of the Rajya Sabha session to help finish pending business.

-Papers are being laid on the table in both Houses.

-President Ram Nath Kovind is now addressing the gathering.

-The power of Atal Ji's oration and in his silence was equal. His communication skills were unparalleled: PM Modi.

-Atal Ji had a long political career, a large part of that career was spent in Opposition. Yet, he continued raising issues of public interest and never ever deviated from his ideology: PM Modi.

-Now on, Atal Ji will be forever in the Parliament's Central Hall, inspiring us and blessing us. If we start talking about the goodness of Atal Ji, it will take hours and hours: PM Modi.

-A portrait of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee unveiled at the Central Hall of Parliament by President Ram Nath Kovind.

-The Parliament will convene soon.

-CAG report will be tabled on Rafale deal in the Parliament.

What is Rafale Deal:

In April 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced that India will buy 36 French-manufactured Rafale fighter jets from French company, Dassault. The Rafale jets were chosen in 2012 over rival offers from the United States, Europe and Russia. India, however, planned to buy 18 off-the-shelf jets from France's Dassault Aviation, with 108 others being assembled in India by the state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited or HAL in Bengaluru, which was later given to Reliance defence.

Although, the last UPA government had made a deal to buy 126 Rafales, which the Modi-led BJP rowed back, saying the twin-engined planes would be too expensive and the deal fell through after nearly decade-long negotiations between India and France.

Later, Prime Minister Narendra Modi intervened and decided to buy 36 "ready-to-fly" fighters instead of trying to acquire technology from Dassault and make it in India.

Soon after the deal was declared, the Congress accused the ruling BJP of non-transparency in the multi-billion dollar deal and called it "one of the biggest failures" of the 'Make-in-India' drive.

And now the government's decision to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets from French company Dassault has become a controversial political issue, where opposition Congress party alleges that Modi government gave the offer to the private firm, Reliance Defence, to profit his friend Anil Ambani.

It is to be mentioned that Dassault Aviation sat up Dassault Reliance Aviation Limited (DRAL) joint venture with Reliance and build a plant in Nagpur, which enabled it to get 10 per cent of the Rs 30,000-crore Dassault Aviation offsets contract, as per reports.

Saima Siddiqui

Saima Siddiqui

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