Report a cover-up, not worth the paper: Rahul
The Opposition and ruling party crossed swords over the CAG report on the Rafale deal on Wednesday.
Continuing with his questioning of the Rafale deal, Congress president Rahul Gandhi noted that the CAG report did mention the dissent note by negotiators and said he didn’t think it’s worth the paper it’s written on. However, he said the report demolished the Government’s argument on price and faster delivery of the fighter jets.
“The CAG report is a cover-up. It ignores the cost of the missing Bank Guarantee and glosses over the suspect costs for India-Specific Enhancements,” Rahul said.
Contending that Congress argument of “all institutions were wrong” and only “Dynast is right” cannot stand on its leg, Union Minister Arun Jaitley responded by saying that the Congress and Opposition parties stand exposed following the CAG report.
“The Government’s argument on price and faster delivery of Rafale jets has been demolished. The only reason for the new deal is to give Rs 30,000 crore to Anil Ambani,” the Congress chief alleged at a Press conference.
“The argument given by the Prime Minister for the new Rafale deal was price and faster delivery. This has been demolished,” he said, citing a note by officials. “You say there was no scam, then why are you afraid of ordering a JPC,” he said, reiterating his demand for a joint parliamentary committee to look into the deal.
On Tuesday, Rahul had accused the PM of “treason” and violating the Official Secrets Act by acting as Anil Ambani’s “middleman” in the Rafale jet contract, citing an email to claim Ambani was aware of the deal days before India and France finalised it.
Reliance Defence, in a statement, had refuted Congress allegation saying the “proposed MoU” mentioned in the email referred to its cooperation with Airbus Helicopter.
But even the CAG couldn’t hide that it may take up to 10 years for the 36 Rafale jets to be delivered,” Rahul alleged at Press conference on Wednesday.
The party dubbed the CAG report on the Rafale deal as a “Chowkidar Auditor General” report and said the claim that the Modi government’s contract to procure 36 fighter jets got 2.86 per cent cheaper price than the UPA-era offer was “fake”.
On his part, Jaitley said the CAG report outlines that 2016 deal terms were lower in terms of price, faster in terms of delivery, while ensuring better maintenance and lower escalation. “It cannot be that the Supreme Court is wrong, the CAG is wrong and only the dynast is right. Satyameva Jayate” – the truth shall prevail. The CAG Report on Rafale reaffirms the dictum,” Jaitley said in a series of tweet.
“The lies of ‘Mahajhootbandhan’ stand exposed by the CAG Report. How does democracy punish those who consistently lied to the nation?,” Jaitley questioned in a tweet.
Thursday, 14 February 2019 | PNS | New Delhi
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