The MoD is caught in crossfire between French Dassault Aviation officials and Indian defence officials who are trying to impose guidelines for procurementof these fighter from off the shelf purchase agreement.
Although India and France are trying to work hard to hammer out an agreement as how both sides can expedite the deal on a fast track basis, the final agreement are getting complex and not happen any time soon.
It appears both sides are on a two different lines altogether about the deal and certain procedural issues are going to be further complicated which will take years if they want move in this format, said a senior government official.
The government is keen on acquiring 36 jets in ready to fly conditions and is a possibility that 18 more will be added to the list.
The whole deal may cost up to 7.5 billion USD but this price tag does not include the cost of spares, simulators and other technical products related to this aircraft.
As the IAF is cannibalising the MiGs the total strength of the IAF has been reduced to 32 squadrons but requires 44 squadrons of mixed aircrafts and helicopters to survive and to carry out air to air and air to surface strikes inside the enemy territory.The problem in government to government deal is that first the French government has to secure the deal from the Dassault Aviation and then confirm it to the Indian government. This can take upto a year or so as there are a bunch of formalities required to fulfill from all the sides. And on more thing ......the French parliament has to agree with the terms and conditions set by the company.
So I think the Indian government so go for a direct purchase rather than bugging the French authorities.
Since the countries like UAE, Qatar and Egypt are also keen in buying these aircrafts and their wishlist is damn too big then the Dassault Aviation will pay less attention to this deal.
Now its the time of this NDA government to decide whether to have a government to government deal (ie outside the DPP policy) or to have direct or normal deal with the French firm (ie within the DPP policy)
That will clarify the whole process and defence analysts can then predict when the Rafale aircraft will have an Indian roundel