A bench comprising Chief Justice Uday Umesh Lalit and S Ravindra Bhat considered lawyer M L Sharma’s submission that a direction for issuing a letters rogatory to collect fresh evidence relating to the deal be issued. He also referred to some media reports alleging that one billion Euros was paid by Dassault Aviation to a middleman to get the deal in its favour.
The bench refused to consider the fresh PIL. Sharma then decided to withdraw the PIL.
On December 14, 2018, the apex court had dismissed a batch of PILs challenging the deal between India and France for the procurement of 36 Rafale jets, saying there was no occasion to “really doubt the decision making process” warranting setting aside of the contract.