France waived in all taxes worth 143.7 million euros to a French-registered telecom subsidiary of Anil Ambani’s Reliance Communications in 2015, months after India announced buying 36 Rafale jets, the French newspaper Le Monde has reported.
Reliance Communications promptly denied any wrongdoing and said the tax dispute was settled under the legal framework available for all companies operating in France. Le Monde said the French tax authorities accepted 7.3 million euros from Reliance Flag Atlantic France as a settlement as against original demand of 151 million euros. Reliance Flag owns a terrestrial cable network and other telecom infrastructure in France.
The Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi had announced the procurement of the 36 Rafale jets after talks with the then French President, Mr. Francois Hollande, on April 10, 2015, in Paris. The final deal was sealed on September 23, 2016.
The Congress has alleged massive irregularities in the deal, saying the government was procuring each aircraft at a cost of over Rs 1,670 crore as against Rs 526 crore finalised by the UPA government.