National Conference vice-president Omar Abdullah on Friday said the BJP-led government at the centre "keeps lowering the bench mark with amazing regularity" as he reacted to Union Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman's remarks that the Opposition "does not deserve to be engaged" on Rafale deal.
"The arrogance on display here is breath taking. No government should refuse to engage with opposition parties. The current government keeps lowering the bench mark with amazing regularity," Mr Abdullah tweeted.
Ms Sitharaman ruled out calling the opposition parties for a meeting to allay their concerns over the Rafale deal, saying they are "throwing an allegation" without any basis as well as showing no concern for operational preparedness of the air force.
In an interview to PTI, the Defence Minister ruled out any engagement with the opposition on issues relating to the multi-billion dollar Rafale fighter jet deal, saying they do not deserve to be involved after throwing muck on a very sensitive issue concerning India's defence preparedness.
Ms Sitharaman said the government decided to go for procuring only two squadrons of Rafale jets as an emergency measure in the wake of China and Pakistan significantly ramping up their air power by inducting stealth fighters.
"Is there any point of calling them and explaining? They are misleading the country with something which was not even agreed to during the UPA government. You are throwing an allegation saying there is a fraud. You did not care for operational preparedness of the air force," she said.