The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) report has exposed a new scam on the deal signed by the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government to acquire the platform from Boeing.
A $2.1 billion deal was signed in January 2009 for eight P-8Is to replace the Navy’s ageing Tupolevs. Purchase of four additional P-8Is was approved in 2010. In its report, the CAG has accused the UPA of tweaking calculations to show Boeing as the lowest bidder.
Tearing apart, the central auditor has said in a report that deliberate attempts were made to favour US company Boeing over its Spanish competitor.
“The contract was concluded with M/s Boeing, USA in January 2009 at MUSD 2,137.54. At a later date, M/s Boeing, USA offered the product support under a separate negotiable contract and consequently the deduced ranking of M/s Boeing, USA as L-1 turned out to be incorrect,” the report says.
According to the report, the government had added the cost of a 20-year support package to the bid submitted by Spain’s EADS CASA while the same cost was not included in Boeing’s offer. Hence, the latter’s bid appeared to be lower.
The report also says that the platform has not met India’s requirement “owing to capability limitations of radars” which does not allow the aircraft to “achieve the envisaged coverage”.