(Last Updated On: April 8, 2021)

Randeep Surjewala said as per a report by a French portal, an investigation by the French Anti-Corruption Agency has revealed that after signing the deal in 2016, Rafale’s manufacturer Dassault allegedly paid 1.1 million Euros to a middleman — Defsys Solutions — which is an Indian company.

After a French media report stated that 1.1 million Euros was paid to a “middleman” by Rafale manufacturers, Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Monday dismissed the claim as “completely baseless” and said the Congress party had made it a big issue before the Lok Sabha polls but lost badly.

Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said, “Why is Congress again talking about the Rafale issue? The Supreme Court and the CAG have found nothing wrong with the deal. Congress made it a big issue ahead of the Lok Sabha polls in 2019 but lost badly. A French journal has published the issue. We have to take into consideration the issue of corporate rivalry in France. The report has named (middleman) Sushen Gupta who was arrested in the AgustaWestland scam. Salman Khurshid had publicly said that he knew Gupta.”

He added, “If we had the Rafale fleet, it would have been of great help during the Balakot strike. Congress had asked for proof after Uri and Balakot strikes. They shouldn’t try to destabilise the willpower of the defence forces of the nation.”

“How can middlemen and payment of commission be permitted in a government-to-government defence contract or in any defence procurement in India? It is in violation of the mandatory Defence Procurement Procedure,” Surjewala said.

Source: Indian Express

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