Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Creating confusion by spreading lies and half truths.

For the last few days, the media has been all agog about the Rafale deal. As per political affiliations, there have been reports saying that it's a good government-to-government deal and the counter saying, that it's a murky one in that Anil Ambani's Reliance Industries have been included as a spares supplier, as per the offset clause.

There is an argument put forth by Rahul Gandhi that the UPA government had negotiated the cost of one aircraft at Rs.527 crores. As a layman in matters of aircraft manufacturing, my doubt is as to which aviation company in the world builds a front line aircraft - sans the avionics and the weapon carrying ability - at such ridiculously low prices?

And another insinuation by the same gentleman is that the Prime Minister has, by making Reliance as one of the offset partners of Dassault, put Rs.30,000 crores into Anil Ambani's pocket and in the bargain has branded him a thief. Now, that is juvenile, immature politics. One might have many political opponents and verbal slug fests are common and natural between adversaries but should never exceed the limits of propriety.

General elections are around the corner in May '19. A lot of electoral rhetoric will be exchanged between the political parties but what should be maintained is the sanity of truth. Hurling lies and half truths at each other can only turn out to be counterproductive and self defeating in the long run. Mind you, to sustain a lie, many more lies would be required and at some stage, the lid would get blown off resulting in a tremendous loss of face for the perpetrator of the fake stories!

Yes, as a citizen of this country I, too, would like to know the truth but the following factors are discernible:-

   (a) The Prime Minister had won the mandate of the last general elections by hammering the
        UPA government on rampant corruption. Would such a person let anyone indulge in corrupt
   (b) The defence requirements were given the least priority as the UPA's defence ministry was
        over cautious and refused to take decisions.
   (c) Meanwhile, the IAF was faced with a depletion in its aircraft inventory due to obsolescence.
   (d) The offset part of the main contract is between Dassault and the companies based in India like
         BTSL, DEFSYS, Kinetic, Mahindra, Samtel, Reliance and negotiations are still on with other
         potential partners. The government has nothing to do with it.
   (e) The former French President, Francois Hollande's statements in a recent interview has been
        the trigger for the latest war-of-words. Why isn't the gist of that interview out as yet?

I suppose, in the cacophonics, the truth will be hard to come by! Sad!!


From history......there was a JPC - Joint Parliamentary Committee - probe on the Bofors acquisitions. Its report confirmed that the gun was the best - where was the doubt on that? - but never found anything about the under-the-table-payments.   

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