Rafale deal: Modi is cor­rupt, says Rahul, BJP re­jects charges

Asian Journal - - ASIA -

New Delhi: Turn­ing up the heat on Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi over the Rafale deal, Congress Pres­i­dent Rahul Gandhi on Thurs­day called him “cor­rupt” and asked him to quit fol­low­ing rev­e­la­tions that in­clu­sion of an In­dian pri­vate de­fence part­ner was an “im­per­a­tive and oblig­a­tory” con­di­tion for award­ing the con­tract.

Re­but­ting Gandhi’s al­le­ga­tions, the rul­ing Bharatiya Janata Party ac­cused the Congress Pres­i­dent of be­lit­tling na­tional se­cu­rity and spread­ing lies. Gandhi’s lat­est salvo came fol­low­ing French web­site Me­di­a­part on Wed­nes­day re­port­ing that Re­liance De­fence was given to Das­sault Avi­a­tion, man­u­fac­turer of the Rafale jets, as an “oblig­a­tory” off­set part­ner for the deal an­nounced by Modi in April 2015.

“The Prime Min­is­ter of In­dia is cor­rupt,” Gandhi said at a spe­cial me­dia brief­ing here. Ques­tion­ing Modi’s “deaf­en­ing si­lence” , de­spite al­le­ga­tions of cor­rup­tion di­rected at him, Gandhi said the Prime Min­is­ter must re­sign.

“Al­le­ga­tions of cor­rup­tion are be­ing di­rected at him and the Prime Min­is­ter is silent. He should re­sign if he can­not re­spond (to the charges),” he said. Gandhi also read out ex­cerpts from Me­di­a­part re­port, which quot­ing Das­sault’s Chief Op­er­at­ing Of­fi­cer Loik Se­galen, said that the choice of the In­dian pri­vate en­tity was a “com­pen­sa­tion” for the pur­chase of the fighter jets.

“What is he be­ing com­pen­sated for,” asked Gandhi al­leg­ing that “Modi put Rs 30,000 crore in his in­dus­tri­al­ist crony’s pock­ets.” “Ex-pres­i­dent of France (Fran­cois Hol­lande), no less, has said that In­dia’s PM is cor­rupt, now the com­pany which got the con­tract, its se­nior ex­ec­u­tive is say­ing that In­dia’s PM is cor­rupt,” said Gandhi, point­ing to the French web­site’s ear­lier re­port quot­ing Hol­lande as say­ing that In­dia had pro­posed the In­dian pri­vate en­tity as the part­ner for the deal.

Rahul Gandhi

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