Rafale deal: The Congress party has used the tape to escalate its attack on the government and Prime Minister Modi.
With the Rafale deal continuing to remain the bone of contention between the Congress and BJP barely months ahead of Lok Sabha elections, the Congress in a startling claim, today alleged that former Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has all files related to the deal “in his bedroom”. In an audio tape released by the Congress, purportedly of a conversation between Goa Cabinet minister Vishwajit Rane and an unknown person, the minister is heard referring to an “interesting statement” by CM Parrikar.
“The Chief Minister made an interesting statement….that “I have all the information on Rafale in my bedroom.” This means that he is holding them to ransom,” Rane is allegedly heard saying in the audio tape.
The Congress party has used the tape to escalate its attack on the government and Prime Minister Modi. “The nation would like to know whether that is a correct fact? The people of India would like to know whether this is the reason why Parrikar has not been removed yet despite his ill-health and incapacity to perform as the chief minister of Goa. Are there some dirty secrets hidden in the Rafale file which neither Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants to show to the Supreme Court nor to the JPC, which the Opposition is demanding,” Congress media-in-charge Randeep Surjewala said.
Listen to the audio tape
— Congress (@INCIndia) January 2, 2019
“There are reports, which are now circulating in the public domain, that two days ago, when there was a cabinet meeting in Goa, Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, who is the former defence minister, lost his cool over his cabinet colleagues and said he cannot be removed as he has a copy of the Rafale file,” Surjewala alleged.
This comes even as Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched a scathing counter to Congress’ claims over the Rafale deal, saying those who have been accusing him in the case, were actually weakening the Armed forces.
Earlier, the Supreme Court gave a clean chit to the government on the issue. Former Union ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie and advocate Prashant Bhushan have moved the Supreme Court, seeking review of its December 14 verdict dismissing all PILs alleging irregularities in the procurement of 36 Rafale jets from France.