On Narendra Modi’s Rafale jibe, Congress says PM solely responsible for delay in arrival of jets

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Published: March 3, 2019 10:23:02 AM

Congress president Rahul Gandhi has been attacking Modi over the Rafale deal, alleging corruption and favouritism. The government has denied the charges.

Tearing into the Congress, Modi alleged its rule saw many defence scams. “They began with jeeps and later graduated to weapons, submarines, helicopters. The defence sector suffered in the process,” Modi said. (File photo)

The Congress party has lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi after the latter on Saturday hit out at the opposition for doubting the armed forces on the anti-terror air strike in Pakistan’s Balakot claiming that the country is feeling the absence of Rafale fighter jets as the results could have been different if India had these fighter jets.

Reacting on PM’s statement, Congress hit out at Modi alleging that the country witnessed his “monologue, fake bravado and narcissistic lies”, as Congress president Rahul Gandhi accused him of being “solely responsible” for the delay in arrival of Rafale jets. Rahul Gandhi took to the twiiter and alleged that PM Modi is solely responsible for the delay of Rafale deal.

“Dear PM, Have you no shame at all? YOU stole 30,000 Crore and gave it to your friend Anil. YOU are solely responsible for the delay in the arrival of the RAFALE jets. “YOU are WHY brave IAF pilots like Wing Cdr. Abhinandan, are risking their lives flying outdated jets,” Gandhi said on Twitter. Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said the nation witnessed a monologue by a “narcissistic” prime minister sans any sense of accountability.

“India is feeling the absence of Rafale. The entire country is saying in one voice today, if we had Rafale probably the result would have been different. The country has suffered a lot due to selfish interests earlier and now politics over Rafale,” PM Modi had said at an event on Saturday.

According to news agency PTI, Surjewala said the prime minister is obsessed with one word– ‘Modi’ — and forgets that India is a thriving democracy of 132 crore people with a multitude of opinions. “When will Modiji take decisive action against Pakistan-sponsored terror? Compromising national security and gross intelligence failure are the characteristic style of a non-functioning Modi government. In last 56 months, 498 soldiers and officers have been martyred in Jammu and Kashmir alone. In the month of February 2019 alone, 55 brave soldiers laid down their lives due to the menace of Pakistan-sponsored terrorism,” a statement quoting Surjewala said.

He said the prime minister had blatantly “politicised” the bravery and martyrdom of India’s soldiers as a political pamphlet. “Latest instances of Modiji’s cronyism are the Rafale deal and handing over of 5 out of 6 airports to his crony friends,” the statement said.

Congress president Rahul Gandhi has been attacking Modi over the Rafale deal, alleging corruption and favouritism. The government has denied the charges.

Tearing into the Congress, Modi alleged its rule saw many defence scams. “They began with jeeps and later graduated to weapons, submarines, helicopters. The defence sector suffered in the process,” Modi said.

“Those who ruled the nation for many many years had interests in two things – doles and deals. The culture of doles and deals harmed our nation’s development journey greatly.

“Why is it that those who ruled the nation for so many years have so many defence scams in their era? They began with Jeeps and later graduated to weapons, submarines, helicopters. In the process, the defence sector suffered.

“If a deal could not happen, defence modernisation could not happen. Who is every deal maker close to? Who is every middle-man close to? The entire nation knows. And Lutyens’ Delhi, surely knows,” he told the gathering.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also lashed out at the opposition saying while the entire world stood behind India in its fight against terror, some parties in the country were questioning it.

He also hit out at his detractors saying they are free to criticise him but their anti-Modi tirade should not help terrorists like Masood Azhar and Hafiz Saeed.

On pilot Abhinandan Varthaman’s release, he said, “Going by the events in the last few days, you would have seen the influence of India’s foreign policy. Have you seen or not.” He said that India’s unity has scared many within the country and outside. He said there was fear in the neighbouring country of the bravery and valour of Indian armed forces and it was good to learn that.

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