Book Review: Controversy in high places

Date Published: Category: Review

In the run-up to the 2019 general election, the alleged “Rafale scandal” dominated the political headlines. The Opposition, led by the Congress Party leader Rahul Gandhi, mounted a high-decibel campaign accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of corruption and mismanagement in the purchase of medium fighters for the Indian Air Force (IAF). Television news channels repeatedly debated whether the purchase of 36 Rafale fighters from French aerospace giant, Dassault, for a whopping 7.8 billion euros was within the rules; or whether Mr Modi had sacrificed IAF interests to allow Anil Ambani and his business empire to enrich themselves from offsets, namely building Rafale fighter parts in India. The debate eventually lost momentum and, by the time votes were cast, died down entirely. But not for Ravi Nair and Paranjoy Guha Thakurta, the two authors of this book — The Rafale Deal: Flying Lies who have doggedly stayed the course and produced a compendium on the subject, analysing the from multiple perspectives.

Read the review on the Business Standard website