Congress president Rahul Gandhi attacked the Narendra Modi-led BJP government at the Centre on Friday over reports that the Defence Ministry raised strong objections to “parallel negotiations” conducted by the Prime Minister’s Office in the Rafale deal.
Speaking to the media, Gandhi said that PM Modi had robbed Rs 30,000 crore from the Air Force and gave it to Anil Ambani.
Calling the PM “guilty” Gandhi said, “Defence Ministry was involved in Rafale negotiation, it is open and shut case.”
Gandhi accused Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharam and Modi of lying to the public.
While Modi had attacked Gandhi over the Rafale deal saying he was “weakening” the Indian Air Force, Gandhi hit back at the BJP and Modi saying “the truth had come out”.
While Gandhi has been making allegations against Modi on the Rafale deal, Friday’s press conference came after an exclusive report in The Hindu said that the Ministry of Defence had raised objections to the PMO’s involvement in the deal.
The Hindu reported that it had documents to suggest that the PMOs parallel parleys with the French weakened its position and gave advantage to the French.
The newspaper quoted an official notation by then Defence Secretary G Mohan Kumar as saying, “RM may pl. see. It is desirable that such discussions be avoided by the PMO as it undermines our negotiating position seriously.”
The BJP, Modi and ministers of his cabinet have consistently denied any wrong doing in the Rafale deal.
Read The Hindu’s exclusive report on the Rafale deal here.