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Yashwant Sinha, Arun Shourie Say Rafale Verdict Relies on Centre's 'Incorrect' Claims, Move SC

In a major boost for the Narendra Modi government ahead of the election this year, the Supreme Court had given it a thumbs-up in the 'sensitive' issue of purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets.

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Updated:January 2, 2019, 12:28 PM IST
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Yashwant Sinha, Arun Shourie Say Rafale Verdict Relies on Centre's 'Incorrect' Claims, Move SC
File photo of a Rafale fighter jet.
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Former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie have moved the Supreme Court, seeking review of its December 14 verdict in the Rafale case. The plea alleges that the Rafale verdict relies upon "patently incorrect claims" made by the Centre in an unsigned note given to the Supreme Court. They have also sought that the plea be heard in an open court.

In a major boost for the Narendra Modi government ahead of the election this year, the Supreme Court had given it a thumbs-up in the “sensitive” issue of purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets.

A bench headed by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi had held that “broadly the processes have been followed” and that India cannot remain unprepared in skies when its adversaries have acquired the most modern fighter planes.
“We are satisfied that there is no occasion to really doubt the process, and even if minor deviations have occurred, that would not result in either setting aside the contract or requiring a detailed scrutiny by the court,” said the bench, also comprising Justices SK Kaul and KM Joseph.

Underlining the limited scope of judicial review in the matters of defence deals, the top court maintained that it will not be correct for the court to sit as an appellate authority to scrutinise each aspect of the process of acquisition when the need and quality of Rafale aircraft are not in question.

The issue had snowballed into a political slugfest, with the Congress raising questions over the deal.
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