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  4. Rafale row: SC refuses to issue notice to Centre, seeks details of decision-making process in sealed cover

Rafale row: SC refuses to issue notice to Centre, seeks details of decision-making process in sealed cover

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The Supreme Court, however, made it clear that it does not want information on pricing and technical details of deal.

India TV News Desk Edited by: India TV News Desk New Delhi Updated on: October 10, 2018 18:22 IST
Rafale fighter jets (File Photo)
Image Source : FILE PHOTO

Rafale fighter jets (File Photo)

In a significant development, the Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to issue notice to Centre in connection with the Rafale fighter jet deal with France.

While hearing a fresh petition against the Rafale deal between India and France, the apex court sought details of the decision-making process in the deal from the Centre in sealed cover.

The Supreme Court, however, made it clear that it does not want information on pricing and technical details of deal.

The apex court also clarified that it is not taking into account allegations made in petitions.

Earlier, the Centre sought the dismissal of the PILs related to the Rafale deal on ground that they have been filed to gain political mileage.

Attorney General K. K. Venugopal told the Supreme Court that the Rafale deal pertains to national security and such issues cannot be reviewed judicially.

The court sought information from the Centre on the decision making process in the deal in a sealed cover by October 29 and fixed the next hearing on the PILs to October 31.

The Supreme Court was hearing a fresh petition against the Rafale deal between India and France.

The petitioner, lawyer Vineet Dhanda, sought a direction to the centre to reveal details of the deal and the comparative prices during the UPA and NDA rule in a sealed cover to the top court. A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices SK Kaul and KM Joseph on Monday confirmed the hearing of the petition in the top court.

The petition also sought information about the contract given to Reliance by Dassault.

Watch: SC seeks details of decision-making process in Rafale deal

A plea which was earlier filed by Advocate ML Sharma, alleging discrepancies in the fighter jet deal with France and seeking a stay on it will also come up for hearing on Wednesday.

Through the petition, Mr. Sharma had claimed that the inter-government agreement to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets should be quashed as it was an ‘outcome of corruption’.

The petitioner also claimed the agreement was not ratified by parliament under Article 253 (parliament has power to make any law for implementing any inter-government agreement) of the Constitution.

A similar petition was filed in the top court in March this year seeking an independent probe into the Rafale deal and disclosure of the cost involved in the deal before Parliament.

The petition, filed by Congress leader Tehseen S Poonawalla, had sought a direction against the centre on why the Union Cabinet's approval was not sought as part of the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) before signing the procurement deal with France on September 23, 2016.

Rafale deal was signed between India and France for the purchase of 36 Rafale fighter aircrafts in a fly-away condition as a part of the upgrading process of Indian Air Force equipment.

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