By Eetika Kapoor | 4:30 PM IST
The allegations put out by the Congress to the BJP for the Rafael Deal took another turn when HAL chairman R. Madhavan said HAL’s basic focus was on manufacturing of aircraft, helicopters, associated accessories and their repair and overhaul, and not in garnering offset business manufacturers (OEM).
Elaborating on a reply to the PTI on Wednesday he said, “We are not contending to be an offset partner to any OEM, rather HAL would like to be a total technology transfer partner for production of aircraft.”
The Congress recently accused the government of forcing Dassault Aviation to make Reliance Defence its offset partner for the Rs 58,000 crore deal to purchase 36 Rafale jets.
It alleged that the government was helping the Anil Ambani group get a contract worth Rs 30,000 crore from the deal.
However, the Reliance Group, in a statement, has said Dassault Aviation’s investment in Reliance Airport Developers Limited has no link with the Rafale fighter jet deal, and has accused the Congress of resorting to “blatant lies” for political gains.
Earlier, in an interaction with the media on November 2, Madhavan had said that the HAL was completely out of the Rafale deal, but at one point of time, it was part of it, which did not kick-off.
HAL would like to be a total technology transfer partner for production of aircraft, says Chairman and Managing Director R. Madhavan https://t.co/cbvMchNxSD
— The Hindu (@the_hindu) November 7, 2018
“We are not in that (Rafale) business now. We were in it at one point of time. It is a direct purchase by the government and (I) cannot make any comments on pricing and policy changes,” he had said.
The Congress has also been demanding answers on why the HAL was not involved in the deal as finalised during the UPA regime.
However, the BJP and Reliance Defence have dismissed all the allegations as false.