India is finally going to buy Multi role fighter jet Dessault Rafale. BJP leader Subramaniyan Swamy is opposing the deal to buy Rafale. He has raised some arguments against the french fighter jet lets check out how valid they are.
1. Subramaniyan Swamy says it is not fuel efficient
Fighter planes are not selected on the basis of fuel efficiency Mr. Swamy. If fuel efficiency matters the most why not ask the govt to ban all cars except Tata Nano ? The argument that it is less fuel efficient is also incorrect it consumes less fuel than Euro-fighter. Fuel efficiency also depends a lot on the type of mission carried out. Any way fuel efficiency is never the criteria of selecting a fighter plane.
2. No other country has purchased it
The needs of every country is different. It all depends on the threat perception. Not everyone country has hostile neighbors like China and Pakistan. Not every country needs a multi role fighter like Rafale. Egypt has placed orders to buy Rafale, Swami’s argument that no country has purchased it is also not correct. Qatar is also in final stage of talk with the French government over acquiring Rafale. Its true that Rafale was rejected by some countries. Canada and Brazil has rejected it, they don’t have bigger threats to face, so they preferred cheaper jets over costly Rafale. How many countries have fought four war likes us who rejected Rafale ? Swamy should ask this question to himself.
3. It performed poor
Out of the three fighter planes who qualified with the Indian Air Force requirement only Rafle is the one which has participated in War. Gripen and Eurofighter has not participated in any war. Rafale successfully did many bombing operations in Afghanistan and Libya. Swami’s argument that Rafale is an under-performer is totally baseless.
Why Rafale is best for us ?
Indian air force is familiar with French warplanes such as the Mirage. Mirage did a great job in Kargil war. There had been no supply issue with France when we were in the War. France is a reliable partner. France was the only Western nation that did not imposed sanctions on us after Pokharan Nuclear test. On the other hand Eurofighter is jointly made by five countries. Its parts are manufactured by different countries and we don’t have equally healthy relation with all those five countries. Unit-wise, the French plane is much cheaper than the Eurofighter. Rafale also has a naval variant which could be of future interest to India.
Rafale is nuclear-capable and will replace the Mirage 2000N in French service as the carrier of the newly-upgraded ASMP/A nuclear stand-off missile; it is also capable of firing the AM-39 Exocet missile, giving it an anti-ship capability that its competitors do not have.
You can check this post for more detailed comparison of Rafale with Eurofighter SU 30 F18 etc