Just after the allegations on the Bharatiya Janata Party by the opposition on favouring a private firm over the defence public sector undertaking Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the dassault and HAL could not go together and their party did not favour private firm.
“We are repeatedly told that you did not take care of HAL. This is completely misplaced. Dassault and HAL could not go together,” she said at the Indian Women’s Press Corps.
“The rule that Original Equipment Manufacturer can have the deal with a firm from either the public sector or private sector was framed by the UPA. Are they saying this rule is wrong? There were talks with HAL but they did not conclude,” the Minister added. She also rejected the Opposition accusation that Prime Minister Narendra Modi unilaterally negotiated the deal without following due processes.
“The Prime Minister’s visit to France in April 2015 was not to announce the deal, it was just an expression of interest. The actual deal was worked out one and a half years later. In August 2016 the Cabinet Committee on Security approved the deal and it was signed in September that year.”