No role in choice of offset partner: govt.

After revelations by former French President Francois Hollande on the Rafale fighter deal, the Defence Ministry on Saturday said “unnecessary controversies” were being created on the statement, and reiterated that the government had “no role in the selection of Reliance Defence as the offset partner.” The French government and Dassault Aviation (DA), the manufacturer of the Rafale jet, also issued statements reiterating the procurement procedure, though neither directly denied the comments made by Mr. Hollande. “As per the guidelines, the vendor is to provide the details of the offset partners either at the time of seeking offset credit or one year prior to discharge of offset obligation…,” the Ministry said. It said Mr. Hollande’s statement needs to be seen in “its full context where the French media has raised issues of conflict of interest involving persons close to the former President.”

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