Dassault Rafale out of Indian MMRCA competition?

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Several Indian newspapers are reporting that the Dassault Rafale has been dropped from the country’s medium multi-role combat aircraft competition after failing the technical evaluation. Dassault officials say that they are still waiting for word from the Indian defence ministry.

The aircraft was not brought to Aero India 2009 in Bangalore, leading to speculation that the type was in danger of being eliminated from the competition. A senior French official, however, defended the no-show at the time saying that the country’s Rafales were required for NATO operations in Afghanistan at that time.

If confirmed, it would leave five contenders for the $10-12 billion contract. They are the Boeing F/A-18E/F, Eurofighter Typhoon, Lockheed Martin F-16, RSK MiG-35 and Saab Gripen. India is due to begin flight trials shortly.



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