History Of Rafale

History Of Rafale

After negotiations spanning over decades, the Rafale jets finally arrived in India, providing a boost to Indian Air Force’s capabilities.

Crux of the Matter

On 29 July2020, the first batch of Rafale jets arrived at Ambala in Haryana state.

  • 1999: The Indian Air Force (IAF) demanded an upgrade in defensive capabilities after the Kargil war.
  • 2001: 126 Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) were demanded by the IAF. The NDA Government issued the RFI (Request for Information) in the same year.
  • 2007: The UPA Government cleared the request for 126 MMRCA. 6 companies were issued the RFP (Request for Proposal) in the same year, demanding 126 MMRCA.
  • 2011: Dassault Aviation for Rafale was selected for exclusive negotiations.
  • 2012: Dassault Aviation for Rafale won the contract, and also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Reliance Group to partner in defence sector and to facilitate the Rafale deal. Dassault agreed to help Reliance to set up ₹1,500 crore factory in Bangalore to produce wings for jets created by HAL in India.
  • 2015: The BJP Govt withdrew the tender of 126 jets.
  • 2016: India and France agreed on a €7.87 billion deal for 36 jets in “flyaway condition”.
  • 2020: 5 jets arrive in India, with all 36 jets to be present in India by 2022.

Problems In 2012 Negotiations

  • 18 Rafale jets were to be obtained in “fly away condition” – 108 to be developed by HAL using transfer of technology
  • Warranty: India wanted warranty of jets produced by HAL from Dassault, which was initially declined.
  • Dassault envisaged 30 million man-hours to produce 108 Rafale jets in India. However, HAL estimated the man-hours as 2.7 times of the Dassault proposal.

Offset Clause And Reliance
The Deal was agreed with an offset clause, meaning that 50% of the total budget would be invested in India by Dassault. Consequently, Dassault agreed with Reliance to form Dassault-Reliance Aerospace (DRA), done after their 2012 Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The key components for the jets would be made in India by DRA. In its 2018 statement, Reliance stated that it will get 25% of the offset, with the remaining to be shared between Thales, Saffran, MBDA, etc.

  • The Rim Fire was a massive wildfire that started in a remote canyon in Stanislaus National Forest, in California. The fire was caused by a hunter’s illegal fire that got out of control, and it was named for its proximity to the Rim of the World vista point, a scenic overlook on Highway 120 leading up to Yosemite.
  • The first evidence of wildfires is rhyniophytoid plant fossils preserved as charcoal, discovered in the Welsh Borders, dating to the Silurian period (about 420 million years ago). Smoldering surface fires started to occur sometime before the Early Devonian period 405 million years ago.
  • A controlled or prescribed burn is a fire set intentionally for purposes of forest management, farming, prairie restoration or greenhouse gas abatement. A controlled burn may also refer to the intentional burning of slash and fuels through burn piles.