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Govt to allow middlemen in defence deals

“The middle men have to be declared and their commission cannot be linked to the outcome of negotiations,” he said on Tuesday night.

Parrikar also said that the ministry is thinking of giving conditioned and limited approval in dealing with banned firms, and a ban has been lifted to get spare parts for Tatra trucks. “Representatives from defence firms are already allowed in the Defence Procurement Policy. The problem is the lack of clarity on what is not acceptable,” he said. Heavy vehicle maker Tatra was banned in March 2012 by UPA government after the then Army Chief General VK Singh’s allegations that he was offered bribe to clear “sub-standard trucks” supplied by the company to the Indian Army. Singh is now a minister in Narendra Modi government.

The new DPP that lays thrust on development of domestic defence industry and faster acquisition process, will be issued in another month and a half. “Changes will be made to the DPP, representatives will be allowed but commission, or percentage of profit for the deals will not be allowed. The representative’s remuneration shall be declared by the company,” said the minister.

Talking about the role of agents, Parrikar said he would prefer to call them representatives or technical consultants. “It exists in DPP but is not clarified.

It should be explained clearly so that bonuses, success fees and commissions are debarred. Any other activity like technical information, attending meetings and others can be permitted to registered representatives. Naturally, they can’t be those who have been blacklisted or debarred from defence deals,” he said.

He said the defence ministry will announce a more liberalized export regime centred on prime minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ vision. “Private companies must be allowed to export defence equipment made in India, and for that rules will be changed,” said Parrikar adding that the foreign ministry would soon come out with a list of countries and equipment that cannot be exported.
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