Rafale verdict: Supreme Court’s ‘clean-chit’ puts BJP and Congress in crosshairs

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Published: November 14, 2019 6:01:14 PM

BJP leaders have claimed that the top court's order is a vindication of transparency in the Modi government's decision-making process

Supreme Court, rafale dealSupreme Court (File photo)

Even as the Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed the plea seeking review of its earlier order on the Rafale deal, a development that should ideally have put the controversy to rest, the Congress and BJP declared war against each other over their interpretation of the order. While the BJP maintained that the Supreme Court’s decision has vindicated the deal finalised between India and France, the Congress said that a portion of the verdict makes a solid ground for a probe into what it termed as the “Rafale scam”.

In a tweet hours after the top court’s verdict, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi observed that Justice KM Joseph, one of the judges on the bench that decided the case, has left open a “huge door” for probe in the matter. He demanded an investigation in the case to begin in full earnest. “Justice Joseph of the Supreme Court has opened a huge door into the investigation of the Rafale scam. An investigation must now begin in full earnest. A Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) must also be set up to probe this scam”, he said while sharing two pages of the order copy.

The Congress said in a statement, “Supreme Court judgment in the Review today has paved way for a comprehensive criminal investigation into Rafale Scam. As usual, BJP Govt is misleading the Nation on the impact of judgment. Supreme Court judgment is not a Clean Chit, but paves way for full investigation.” The statement was put out by Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala.

On its official Twitter handle, the party added, “The Supreme Court’s judgement on Rafale by no means gives the govt a “clean chit”. The BJP is misleading the public by suggesting it has been cleared of all wrongdoing. The SC has clearly stated there are no restrictions on investigative agencies probing the scam”.

On the other hand, the BJP leaders have claimed that the top court’s order is a vindication of transparency in the Modi government’s decision-making process and asked the Congress and Rahul Gandhi to apologise to the nation as its “false narrative” is out in the open. BJP president and Union Home Minister Amit Shah took to social media saying, “Supreme Court’s decision to dismiss the review petition on #Rafale is a befitting reply to those leaders and parties who rely on malicious and baseless campaigns. Today’s decision, yet again, reaffirms Modi sarkar’s credentials as a govt which is transparent and corruption-free.”

Party working president JP Nadda said that while the Congress ried to misled the country, the truth has finally prevailed. “From Road to Parliament, Rahul Gandhi and his party tried hard to mislead the country on this issue but Truth Prevailed. I wish Rahul Gandhi would be in country and should make apologies to the nation”, he tweeted.

Earlier in the day, addressing a press conference, Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad observed, “Rahul Gandhi had said that the SC had called our beloved PM a thief. It is indeed the lowest point of political discourse that Rahul Gandhi, then Congress President, stooped to the shameful extent of misquoting the SC deliberately and consciously.”

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