Govt. ap­pli­ca­tion to cor­rect Rafale ver­dict awaits hear­ing

Claimed SC erred in gram­mar to ‘mis­in­ter­pret’ in­for­ma­tion

The Hindu - - NEWS - Kr­ish­nadas Ra­jagopal

The Supreme Court is yet to hear an ap­pli­ca­tion filed by the govern­ment on De­cem­ber 15, 2018, for a cor­rec­tion in the Rafale judg­ment.

The si­lence that shrouds the ap­pli­ca­tion be­lies the ur­gency with which the govern­ment re­turned to the apex court on De­cem­ber 15 — the very next day of the pro­nounce­ment of the judg­ment. The govern­ment has so far not made any oral men­tion be­fore the court for an early hear­ing of its ap­pli­ca­tion.

In the ap­pli­ca­tion, the govern­ment claimed the apex court judg­ment erred in English gram­mar to “mis­in­ter­pret” in­for­ma­tion sub­mit­ted to it in a sealed cover note about the pric­ing of the deal for 36 Rafale jets.

It had filed the ap­pli­ca­tion in the face of a po­lit­i­cal storm whipped up by the ver­dict.

The Op­po­si­tion had gone pub­lic about how the Supreme Court was made to be­lieve by the govern­ment that the pric­ing de­tails of the Rafale jets were shared with the Comptroller and Au­di­tor Gen­eral (CAG) and ex­am­ined by the Pub­lic Ac­counts Com­mit­tee (PAC). The ver­dict said, “The pric­ing de­tails have, how­ever, been shared with the CAG, and the re­port of the CAG has been ex­am­ined by the PAC. Only a redacted por­tion of the re­port was placed be­fore Par­lia­ment and is in the pub­lic do­main.”

The eight-page ‘cor­rec­tion’ ap­pli­ca­tion was hastily filed on a Satur­day by a govern­ment fac­ing the heat af­ter Congress pres­i­dent Rahul Gandhi held a press con­fer­ence, claim­ing that the PAC was in pos­ses­sion of no such CAG re­port on Rafale prices.

PAC chair­man Mal­likar­jun Kharge had also de­manded an apol­ogy from the govern­ment.

The govern­ment had said that the court mis­in­ter­preted its “is” in the note as “has been.” It was only cit­ing pro­ce­dure and not an ac­tu­al­ity that hap­pened.

Re­view pe­ti­tions

The re­view pe­ti­tions filed by Yash­want Sinha, Arun Shourie, Prashant Bhushan and Aam Aadmi party MP San­jay Singh are also pend­ing. They al­lege that the apex court judg­ment is rid­dled with fault lines. They want the apex court to re­con­sider its “er­ro­neous” judg­ment, which re­lies on a “non-ex­is­tent” CAG re­port to up­hold the Rafale deal.

The pe­ti­tion­ers con­tend that the judg­ment based on a hy­po­thet­i­cal CAG re­port was not merely a “cler­i­cal or arith­meti­cal slip” but a sub­stan­tial er­ror.

They want a “re­call” of the ver­dict.

The pe­ti­tion­ers have also ques­tioned the judg­ment’s dis­missal of lack of sov­er­eign guar­an­tee from the French govern­ment’s side as a “mi­nor de­vi­a­tion.”

The govern­ment sub­mit­ted the pe­ti­tion on De­cem­ber 15.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.