9.1 C
Monday, October 26, 2020

India Makes Controversial Arms Deal with France

India continues to follow its policy of supplier diversification in procuring arms

Must read

Bolivia Chooses Socialism And Luis Arce For President

BOLIVIA. La Paz. After a tense election that took place on 18 Oct., it was announced Sunday evening that Luis Arce, presidential candidate...

Masaba Gupta Launches A Limited Edition Of Headphones Designed For The Millennial At Lakmé Fashion Week 2020

INDIA. Mumbai. When one thinks of a great lifestyle brand then it is boAt that makes life truly exciting. The brand has...

India’s Best-Selling Collaborative Fiction Novelists Launch Their Second Book

INDIA. India's first collaborative fiction writers have published their second fiction novel 'Mooncircles - As the Night Unravelled'. The authors who have...

Maximizing Productivity Under Work From Home

Hello, am I audible? Apologies, I think there’s some connectivity issue. Now, that these conversations have...
Smita Malwe
Smita Malwe
Smita is a communication enthusiast and a seasoned PR professional. She is a keen follower of Business, Technology, Politics, Healthcare; always ready to pen down engaging stories.

INDIA. New Delhi. With the arrival of the first batch of Rafale fighter jets, India moved a step ahead in its combat capacity getting an edge over its neighbours like China and Pakistan. Fulfilling its international ambitions, India has been one of the largest weapons and arms importers since 2010. In the last decade, India has strengthened its import ties with countries like the USA, France, and Russia.

According to a report by Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Russia was the largest supplier to India till 2014 but its share of total Indian arms imports decreased from 72% to 56 % due to delivery delays. The US secured its place as the second-largest import supplier to India between 2010-2014. Under the Modi-Trump leaderships, security ties between both countries have been strengthened and evolved into a strategic partnership. However, the second half of the decade witnessed a decline in the US’s share of arms imports. From 2015 onwards, imports from the US was around 51% lower than in the period 2010-2014.

- Advertisement -

To further strengthen the war fleet, former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (Indian National Congress) invited international manufacturers to bid for fighter jets in 2007. French manufacturer Dassault Systems put in the lowest bid. Conversations were initiated with the French maker to close the deal for the Rafale fighter jets.

As per the Indo-France intergovernmental agreement, the acquisition of Rafale Fighter Jets was executed in September 2016. India inked a deal with the French government to purchase 36 fighter jets manufactured by Dassault Aviation. The deal was made at a whopping price of 7.87 billion euro. The multibillion-dollar jet deal created controversy in the political corridors of India. The allegations put by the largest national opposition party against Prime Minister Modi caused a political storm in the country. However, the Modi government firmly stood on their statement of not favouring the Indian company involved in the French fighter jet deal.

Potential conflict of interest

- Advertisement -

The French president Mr Francois Hollande’s stated that the Modi government had pressured the French craft maker Dassault Aviation to get into a partnership with Anil Ambani’s Reliance Defence. This Indian company was notably incorporated in March 2015 while the discussions were going on with France to seal the Rafale deal.

Hollande also denied having a say in this arrangement and the Rafale deal. His statement ignited a debate in India. Modi’s government responded by referring to India’s “offset policy” to indicate the government’s good intentions.

India’s Defence Offset Policy 2008

- Advertisement -

India, in 2005, through its Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP), announced an official policy to secure offsets for its defence importsThe key objective of the Defence Offset Policy is to leverage capital acquisitions to develop the Indian defence industry by encouraging the development of internationally competitive enterprises. Augmenting capacity for research, design and development related to defence products and services is another key objective of the 2005 policy. Another key aspect of the policy is to foster the development of sectors functioning in collaboration like civil aerospace and internal security.

Amended in 2008, the DPP states that any foreign supplier has to comply with the condition of investing a minimum of 30 % of the total contract value in India.  

Arming with the aim of national appeasement

India’s arms import from France increased by 715%, making it the third-largest supplier during 2015-19, but Russia continues to dominate the supply of the Indian armoury. Current geopolitical factors are pushing India to keep enhancing its armoury and also to establish strategic partnerships with countries like Israel and France. With its broader policies to maintain ties with countries like the US and Russia and simultaneously diversifying its warfare portfolio to countries like France, India is certainly marching towards a great power position. The arrival of Rafale fighter jets seems to be boosting citizen’s morale. The Modi government is now sailing on the current hype created around Rafale whereas in the past India has a history of buying some of the best machines like Jaguars from the UK and Mirage 2000s from France.

The rationale behind the current hype over Rafale is as yet unknown, but it appears from the current narrative that the Modi led government is focused on impressing the Gen X voters who will be pleased by the sense of strengthened status of the nation.

Read more: Rafale Fighter Jets To Reach India By Wednesday

More articles

Latest article

The AI Frolics Of Social Networking

A thought worth deliberating Where the world is facing the deadly pandemic of COVID-19, when the entire humanity...

Maximizing Productivity Under Work From Home

Hello, am I audible? Apologies, I think there’s some connectivity issue. Now, that these conversations have...

Spanish Human Rights NGO THRibune And The UNODC Are Building The First Social Reintegration Center For Young Women In Kenya

KENYA, Nairobi. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and Spanish Human Rights NGO THRibune will build the first social...

Germany Hit By The Second Wave Of COVID-19

GERMANY. Germany reported 11,242 new COVID-19 cases on Friday. According to the reports, the new cases have brought Germany’s total number of...

Love & OM: Journey To Self Through Relationship (Part IV): Self-Actualization

It was 3am in Bangalore. 14 March 2020. Coronavirus was sucking the life from India all around me. I was on my...