Narendra Modi has much to hide about Rafale deal: Congress

Narendra Modi has much to hide about Rafale deal: Congress

NEW DELHI: Continuing with its campaign against the government over the Rafale deal, the Congress on Sunday claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was directly involved in it, adding that he had much to hide about it.nnQuestioning Modi’s silence over the deal, senior Congress leader Anand Sharma claimed that only the prime minister was aware that the offset contracts would not be given to Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).nn”It was his (Modi’s) decision. Only he was privy to what he was going to do,” Sharma said, addressing a press conference at the party office here.nnIt was expected that the prime minister would speak on this issue of national importance, but he continued to remain silent while making tall claims about his government, the Congress leader said.nn”The prime minister has much to hide in the Rafale deal. His silence raises fundamental questions, because he is directly complicit and personally accountable for it,” he alleged.nnClaiming that the Rafale deal was the biggest scam in the history of the country, Sharma reiterated his party’s demand for setting up a Joint Parliamentary Committee to look into it.nnThe former Union minister also questioned Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s visit to France, during which she will take stock of the progress of French firm Dassault Aviation supplying 36 Rafale jets to the Indian Air Force under the Rs 58,000-crore deal.nnSharma maintained that there was a hike in the price of the fighter aircraft India was buying from France and asserted that the prime minister needed to clear many doubts about the deal that had been raised.nnHe said more details of the deal would emerge if a forensic audit of it was carried out.nnThe Congress has been claiming that the aircraft will cost significantly more than what the previous United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government was negotiating.nnThe opposition party has also been demanding answers from the Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government as to why HAL was not involved in the deal as finalised during the UPA regime.nnSource: Press Trust of India

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