Maybe Hulka was taking the entire picture into view. You could have the best aircraft “design”, yet it could be a failure because it is not easy to maintain, it is not reliable and it costs a lot more to sustain than as advertised. Sounds like the Indians are just learning that now. So, I'd agree that, while the design might be “good”, the overall systems engineering sounds like it is lacking.
I doubt that the Indians could have any idea of the actual costs of maintenance and so on since the design is still not fixed, nor has a single Indian variant been produced. All I know is that every design is a result of compromise and the test is whether the design objectives AS SET have been met. On this standard, the F-35 has been an abject failure. Everyone has their own set of problems, us included.