New Delhi: The Comptroller and Auditor General said on Wednesday in a much-anticipated report that the $8.7 billion deal signed by Narendra Modi government with France to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets from Dassault Aviation was 2.86 per cent cheaper than what had been negotiated by the previous UPA government in 2007.
However, it outlined various measures which would have made the deal even further cheaper.
The CAG report on “Capital Acquisition in the Indian Air Force” tabled in Parliament said that most of these savings were only because the Indian Air Force changed the missile system in 2015 from what it wanted in 2007.
This saved 17 per cent in the India-specific enhancement cost of the Rafale jets.
However, there was scope to save even more under the India-specific enhancements (to make the fighters compatible with special requirements of the Indian Air Force) because the Indian negotiation team had proposed to postpone six enhancements for future aircraft, which were shot down by the defence ministry.
The CAG said four of these enhancements were “not required in the technical and staff evaluations” and constituted 14 per cent of the India-specific enhancement cost.
Also, the weapons package offered in the new deal was 1.05 per cent cheaper.
The price of the basic aircraft was the same during the NDA and UPA eras, the CAG said....