The 38th Shloka of second chapter of the Bhagavad Gita says:
This brings up a relevant preaching. It means when you treat happiness and sorrow equally and not differentiate between them, also if you do not distinguish between loss or gain and defeat or victory; in such a case if you go for a war and fight, you won’t receive any sins. Fight for the sake of duty; treat alike happiness and distress, loss and gain and victory and defeat. If fulfilling your responsibility in this way, you will never incur a sin."This Sanskrit shloka is a clear depiction of the current scenario as Indians got there first set of five Rafale fighter planes after overcoming a long political drama straight from France to Ambala airbase. Let us take a short glance on the history of Rafale's journey.
In 2007 under UPA governance ministry of defence issues a request for procurement of 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft fighters and from there onwards in 2011 IAF shortlisted Rafale and Euro-fighter jets and in 2012 Dassault aviation rafale aircraft comes up with the lowest bid as per the Indian defence procedure, firms offering the lowest prices and meeting the requirements of the respective services are given the contract and in this deal to procure 126 combat aircraft, the LCC has been taken into view to determining the lowest bidder and from there rafale was come into existence in India else Rafale was originated on 18 May 2001 at France and was manufactured by Dassault Aviation. In 2014 HAL( Hindustan Aeronautical Limited) and Dassault sign a work share agreement for 108 aircraft, but this deal was not a success because then defence minister A.K Antony wants Dassault to take the responsibility of Rafale aircraft which will be made in India but Dassault denied and said that they can't take the responsibility of those aircraft which do not match their standards.
In 2015 under the NDA regime government announces new deal to acquire 36 direct fly-away aircraft from France and in 2016, India and France signed an inter-government Memorandum of Understanding of 36 rafale aircraft and the cost for 36 planes is approx 60,000 crore Indian rupees according to Dassault annual report, this deal includes the offset of 50 per cent,Under the offset agreement, the French side has made a 30 per cent offset commitment for military aerospace research and development programmes and the rest 20 per cent for making components of Rafales here in India, but in 2018 PIL was filed in the apex court to seeks independent probe into centre's decision to procure 36 rafale fighter jets and their cost further supreme court asks centre to provide pricing details along with steps that closed the deal.
The apex court has given a clean chit to the decisionmaking followed by the government for the Rafale jet deal between India and France Delivering the Rafale verdict, a Supreme Court bench—headed by Chief Justice RanjanGogoi—dismissed petitions on three areas of concerns about the“decision-making process, pricing and offsets”.
• There is no occasion to doubt the decision-making process in the deal.
• There is a necessity to induct fourth and fifth-generation fighter aircraft and the country cannot remain without these jets.
• Not the court's job to deal with the comparative details of the pricing when the need and quality of aircraft are not in doubt.
• No substantial matter to interfere with the issue of procurement, pricing and offset partner.
• No material to show that the deal is commercial favouritism.
• No wrongdoing in the selection of Indian offset partners by Dassault Aviation.
• Questions raised on Rafale deal only after ex-French President François Hollande came out with a statement, which can't be the basis of judicial review.
SUPREME COURT VERDICT
The decision to procure 36 or 126 fighter jets lies with the government, can't compel the government.
The first fighter jet was handed over to the Indian AirForce in October 2019, in France, in a ceremony attended by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and French Minister for Armed Forces Florence Parly. The delivery of all the 36 jets is scheduled by the end of 2021. Of the ten delivered to the Air Force, five are in France for training. Pilots and support personnel of the Indian Air Force have been given complete training about the aircraft and the weapon systems by Dassault in France. According to the Indian Embassy in France, IAF batches will continue to be trained in France for the next nine months. The aircraft will be inducted at Air Force Station Ambala and the final induction ceremony will take place in the second half of August. The IAF aircrew and ground crew have undergone comprehensive training on the aircraft, including its highly advanced weapons systems, which are fully operational now. The first jets will comprise the resurrected No 17 ‘Golden Arrows’ squadron of the Air Force and will be stationed in Ambala.The Golden Arrows were raised in 1951 and have been involved in several significant operations through their history, including the Kargil war. But after the AirForce started to phase out the Mig-21, which were operated by the Golden Arrows, the squadron was disbanded in 2016.Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha (retd), a former IAF chief said that “The Rafale will be a battle winner for the IAF and a huge morale booster at a time of military tensions with China. However, I feel the numbers are not adequate,”
Summing up, in short, the rafale deal will strengthen Indian airforce but the number is still not enough we need more such aircraft and the most important part is the self-reliance, more and more Indian defence companies should participate in the global defence market so that we can achieve the ATMANIRBHARTA in defence sector also because it will not only generate the jobs but it will also minimize our financial burden and dependency on others.