In an all out attack, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of corruption and said that the Rafale aircraft deal was a “secret pact” between Modi and the French government.
“I have said this earlier as well, Modi ji is involved in this Rafale scam. He himself went to Paris to sign the deal. It’s a secret pact with the French government,” Rahul said outside Parliament House.
“This is for the first time that the government is refusing to reveal the prices of the jets. But no onw asks any questions, no one wants to talk about it,” he added.
Mocking the media, the Gandhi scion said that he was aware that the press was under a lot of pressure but it was time that they started asking questions.
“I know you are afraid and scared… you are under a lot of pressure but at least ask some questions about the deal,” he said.
The Congress chief also took to Twitter raising questions over the deal to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets from France for Rs.58,000 crore.
“Top Secret (Not for Distribution) RM says the price negotiated for each RAFALE jet by the PM and his “reliable” buddy is a state secret. Action Points 1.Informing Parliament about the price is a national security threat 2.Brand all who ask, Anti National,” he tweeted.
(Not for Distribution)
RM says the price negotiated for each RAFALE jet by the PM and his "reliable" buddy is a state secret.
1.Informing Parliament about the price is a national security threat
2.Brand all who ask, Anti National#TheGreatRafaleMystery
— Office of RG (@OfficeOfRG) February 6, 2018
Congress has in the past as well accused the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government at the Centre of wrongdoings in the Rafale jet deal.
The Congress said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government had agreed to pay for each Rafale aircraft, three times the price that was negotiated in 2012 by the previous UPA government it led.
French company Dassault’s Rafale had emerged as the lowest bidder in an international tender in 2012 but the final deal for 126 aircraft was never closed by the previous UPA government.
By the time the BJP-led government came to power in 2014, the deal was deadlocked with Dassault refusing to certify key components of the jet which were to be built by the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, unless a series of conditions were met.
With successive Air Force chiefs telling the government that India’s air defence would be seriously affected without the jets being inducted, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced an off-the-shelf purchase from France during a visit to Paris in April 2015.
The final deal in 2016 was higher than what was on offer four years earlier.