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Now, French NGO demands probe into "potential acts of corruption" in Rafale deal

Sherpa also sought a probe into the choice of Dassault’s Indian offset partner, Anil Ambani’s Reliance group

Saturday November 24, 2018 12:38 PM, ummid.com News Network

French NGO demands probe into Rafale Deal

Paris: Sherpa, a French anti-corruption NGO has filed a complaint with the office of National Financial Prosecutor demanding a thorough probe into what it called "potential acts of corruption" in the Rs 59,000 crore-Rafale fighter jet deal, signed between India and France in September 2016.

The NGO in its complaint filed with the National Financial Prosecutor's Office asked it to clarify under which conditions 36 fighter aircraft produced by Dassault Aviation were sold to India in 2016 and the choice of its Indian partner, Reliance, a group led by a close partner of the Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi.

The NGO, in its press release, has said it expects the National Public Prosecutor's Office to "promptly investigate the seriousness of the facts and the presumptions on the reported offences: potential corruption, grant of undue advantages, trading in influence, complicity of these offences, concealment of corruption and laundering of these offences."

“Everything indicates that it is likely to be a very serious matter,” said William Bourdon, the founder of Sherpa told Mediapart, adding that “the information communicated to the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office should lead to the opening of an investigation as soon as possible “.

Rafale fighter aircraft, a twin-engine Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA), is manufactured by French aerospace company Dassault Aviation. Rafale deal is a defence agreement signed between the governments of India and France for purchasing 36 Rafale fighter aircraft in fly-away condition as a part of the upgrading process of Indian Air Force equipment.

The Congress and other opposition parties alleged that Modi government has purchased the fighter jets costing more than 03 times the price the erstwhile UPA government had finalised. The Modi government however rubbished these allegations saying it had done nothing wrong.

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