Rahul Gandhi acting as lobbyist for Rafale rivals: BJP after Rahul’s ‘middleman’ charge at PM Modi

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New Delhi | Published: February 12, 2019 2:05:25 PM

Minutes after Congress chief Rahul Gandhi called Prime Minister Narendra Modi a “middleman” for businessman Anil Ambani in the Rafale jets deal with France and demanded criminal proceedings against him for treason, the BJP responded with a counter offensive

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The war of words between the Congress and the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party on the Rafale deal continued on Tuesday with both sides making fresh allegations against each other.

Minutes after Congress chief Rahul Gandhi called Prime Minister Narendra Modi a “middleman” for businessman Anil Ambani in the Rafale jets deal with France and demanded criminal proceedings against him for treason, the BJP responded with a counter offensive, charging Rahul for acting at the behest of Rafale’s rival firms.

Prasad accused Gandhi of working as a lobbyist for competitive aircraft supplier companies. “From where did he get the email of Airbus? Airbus itself is under clout for deals during UPA regime,” Prasad said, referring to an email from an Airbus executive cited by Rahul at a press conference in Delhi today.

Rahul said that the Airbus executive wrote that Anil Ambani met the French Defence Minister and told him 10 days before the Rafale deal was signed that he was going to get it.

READ ALSO | Rafale deal: Rahul Gandhi says PM Modi acted as middleman for Anil Ambani, seeks criminal proceedings

Rahul then went on to question the Prime Minister on how Ambani knew of the Rafale deal 10 days in advance when Defence Minister, HAL and Foreign Secretary didn’t know of it. “If this is true then PM is in violation of official secrets act, criminal action must be initiated on this basis,” he told the reporters.

“This is treason, Narendra Modi is doing what spies do, he is informing somebody of a defence matter. He is under oath to protect these secrets,” Rahul added, seeking criminal proceedings against PM Modi.

Gandhi’s accusation came after a report The Indian Express report said that the Anil Ambani had visited France days before PM Modi’s went to the country in 2015 when the deal had been announced. The report also said that Anil Ambani met top officials of high-profile defence companies in France.

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