Millennium Post

Rafale verdict: SC to hear review pleas in open court

New Delhi: The Supreme Court Tuesday agreed to hear in open court the petitions seeking review of its December verdict that dismissed pleas challenging the deal between India and France for procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets.

A bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices S K Kaul and K M Joseph, in its chamber hearing, allowed the prayer of former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie as also activist lawyer Prashant Bhushan that the review pleas be heard in open court. "The prayer for open Court hearing is allowed", said the bench which also considered the review petition filed by AAP MP Sanjay Singh through lawyer Dheeraj Singh.

Besides two review petitions, the top court is also seized of some applications including the one filed by Sinha, Shourie and Bhushan seeking perjury prosecution of government officials for allegedly misleading the court on the issue of pricing and procurement process.

A day after the December verdict, the Centre had moved the apex court seeking correction in the judgement where a reference was made about the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) report and Parliament's Public Accounts Committee (PAC), saying "misinterpretation" of its note has "resulted in a controversy in the public domain". On December 14, 2018, the apex court had dismissed various pleas challenging the deal for procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets by India from France, saying that there was no occasion to "really doubt the decision making process" warranting setting aside of the contract.

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