At the height of the negotiations over the controversial €7.87 billion Rafale deal between India and France, the Defence Ministry raised strong objections to “parallel negotiations” conducted by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) with the French side.
Stating that it was clear that such parallel discussions by the PMO had “weakened the negotiating position of MoD and Indian Negotiating Team,” a Defence Ministry note dated November 24, 2015 brought this to the attention of the then Defence Minister, Manohar Parrikar.
Stating that “we may advise PMO that any Officers who are not part of Indian Negotiating Team may refrain from having parallel parlays [parleys] with the officers of French Government,” it suggested that “in case the PMO is not confident about the outcome of negotiations being carried out by the MoD, a revised modality of negotiations to be led by PMO at appropriate level may be adopted in the case.”…
- Hindu report proves Narendra Modi govt abruptly altered modalities of Rafale negotiations; Manohar Parrikar ignored objections – By Suhit Sen (Feb 8, 2019, First Post)
- Four reasons why the attacks on The Hindu’s Rafale story are shallow and self-implicating – By Varghese K. George (Feb 9, 2019, The Hindu)
- L’affaire Rafale – By D. Raghunandan (Feb 15, 2019, Frontline)
- The Irrationality Behind the Benchmark Price of the Rafale Deal – By Sudhansu Mohanty (Feb 9, 2019, The Wire)