In what may be termed as a shocking revelation, raising more doubts on the Prime Minister Modi-led NDA government’s decision regarding the Rafale deal, Anil Ambani’s Reliance Entertainment has confirmed that it funded 15 per cent of the budget of Tout La-Haut, the French film produced by Julie Gayet, the partner of then French President Francois Hollande.
1.48 million Euros were paid by Reliance Entertainment towards the production of the film through its partner, Visvires Capital, which is a French financing firm.
“Reliance Entertainment had paid the aforesaid only EUR 1.48 million to Visvires Capital on 5th December 2017, as customary only about two weeks before the release of the film on 20th December 2017,” The Indian Express quoted the statement of the company as saying.
The Indian Express, on August 31, had reported that Reliance Entertainment had announced on January 24,2016 that it had signed an agreement with Julia Gayet’s firm, Rouge International, to jointly produce a French film and just two days later, an MoU was signed between Prime Minister Modi and Hollande for the purchase of 36 Rafale jets.
Last week, former French President Hollande said it was the Indian Government that proposed the name of Anil Ambani’s Reliance Defence to be chosen as the offset partner of Dassault in the Rafale deal.
“We didn’t have a say in that. It was the Indian government that proposed this service group (Reliance), and Dassault who negotiated with Ambani. We didn’t have a choice, we took the interlocutor who was given to us,” French news website Mediapart.fr quoted Hollande as saying.
This contradicted the claim made by the Indian Government that it was a commercial decision and that neither French Government nor the Indian Government had any say in the same.
However, the Ministry of Defence stood by its claim and said, “The report referring to fmr French president Mr. Hollande’s statement that GOI insisted upon a particular firm as offset partner for the Dassault Aviation in Rafale is being verified. It is reiterated that neither GoI nor French Govt had any say in the commercial decision.”
The Congress has always alleged the Rafale deal to be nothing but a scam.
The party has also questioned handing over the contract to Reliance Defence, which owes Rs. 45,000 crore to banks and has no prior experience of manufacturing jets.