Rafale Row Live Updates: "Congress Tried To Renegotiate Rafale Deal In 2012 For Kickbacks," Says BJP

Hollande on Rafale deal: Congress President Rahul Gandhi slammed PM Modi, saying he betrayed the country.

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Rafale Row Live Updates: 'Congress Tried To Renegotiate Rafale Deal In 2012 For Kickbacks,' Says BJP

Hollande on Rafale deal: France said it was not involved in choice of Indian partners (File)

New Delhi: 

Former French president Francois Hollande's comment that the Indian government had proposed Anil Ambani's Reliance Defence as the India partner in the Rafale jet deal has snowballed into a political controversy in the country. Congress President Rahul Gandhi, in his sharpest attack on PM Narendra Modi, said "former French president Francois Hollande is calling the Prime Minister of India a thief" and that the PM needs to break his silence. His allegations have been sharply countered by Law Minister and senior BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad, who responded saying that Rahul Gandhi had made a "shameful, irresponsible statement".

On Friday, French journal Mediapart had quoted France's ex-President Francois Hollande as saying: "We did not have a say in this... the Indian government proposed this service group and Dassault negotiated with (Anil) Ambani group. We did not have a choice, we took the partner who was given to us."

The French government has issued a statement, saying they were not involved in the choice of Indian industrial partners. "The French government is in no manner involved in the choice of Indian industrial partners who have been, are being, or will be selected by French companies," the statement read.

Here are the live updates on Hollande's comment on Rafale deal:


Sep 22, 2018
18:46 (IST)
The DMK has demanded an inquiry into the deal to find out the "truth" following former French President Francois Hollande's reported comments.

"PM (Narendra) Modi promised a transparent, corruption free government but former French President Hollande's interview shows that the Rafale deal is suspect," DMK president M K Stalin said in a tweet.

"The PM is accountable to the people of India. A full fledged enquiry should be ordered to find the truth," he said.
Sep 22, 2018
18:35 (IST)
Sep 22, 2018
17:43 (IST)
After Rahul Gandhi's "Thief" Attack On Rafale, BJP Drops "Bribe" Charge
Former French President Francois Hollande's startling claim on the Rafale deal has snowballed into a huge war of words between the centre and the opposition in India. Congress president Rahul Gandhi, in his sharpest attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi, today said "former French president Francois Hollande is calling the Prime Minister of India a thief" and that the PM needs to break his silence. Calling the Rafale deal corrupt, Rahul Gandhi said it was "obvious that PM Modi is corrupt." Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad angrily responded that Rahul Gandhi had made a "shameful, irresponsible statement".
Sep 22, 2018
17:31 (IST)
Sep 22, 2018
17:30 (IST)
Sep 22, 2018
17:29 (IST)
Pointers from Ravi Shankar Prasad's press conference
  • He has not done his homework at all. He keeps changing the cost.
  • All 36 aircrafts will come to India because the country needs them
  • The government does not decide what the company decides on partnerships.
  • It is my charge with full responsibility that Rahul Gandhi is playing into the hands of Pakistan and China
Sep 22, 2018
17:23 (IST)
Sep 22, 2018
17:22 (IST)
"We need weapons, missiles, defence machinery on it. We need to fit it with bombs. So we are not irresponsible like Rahul Gandhi to disclose exact details.

As mentioned by (Finance Minister) Arun Jaitley, the price negotiated by NDA is 9% less for basic aircraft and 20% less in case of fully loaded, as compared to UPA's price," said Ravi Shankar Prasad.
Sep 22, 2018
17:17 (IST)
Sep 22, 2018
17:15 (IST)
It is important to expose Rahul Gandhi's lies. In August 2007, a Request for Proposal was issued. Two companies came forward. The deal was finalised after nine years: Ravi Shankar Prasad
Sep 22, 2018
17:09 (IST)
Rahul Gandhi is chargesheeted in National Herald case with his mother. He is silent on land grabbing accusations against his brother-in-law (Robert Vadra): Ravi Shankar Prasad
Sep 22, 2018
17:05 (IST)
Sep 22, 2018
17:05 (IST)

  • No one has used such words against a PM of the country before
  • We can't expect anything else from Rahul Gandhi
  • He has no skills. He is just there because of his family
Sep 22, 2018
17:02 (IST)
Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad addresses media on the controversy
Sep 22, 2018
17:01 (IST)
Home Minister Rajnath Singh said the accusations were baseless. "It makes no sense to create a controversy over the Rafale issue. On the said utterance of former President of France, the Defence Ministry has already issued a statement and has stated that they are verifying it. It is my understanding that all accusations are completely baseless, were always so and will remain baseless," he said.
Sep 22, 2018
15:36 (IST)
It is now for the prime minister to clear his name... We are absolutely convinced that the prime minister is corrupt. And one thing is for certain... that the chowkidaar of the country is actually a chor: Rahul Gandhi
Sep 22, 2018
15:35 (IST)
He (Mr Hollande) says that in the meeting with the prime minister he was told that this was his only option: Rahul Gandhi
Sep 22, 2018
15:35 (IST)
The former French president has clearly and categorically said that the prime minister himself suggested the name of Anil Ambani's company: Rahul Gandhi
Sep 22, 2018
15:34 (IST)
What is staggering is that the prime minister is still silent on it. Not a single word from him. Here you have the former president of France who met the PM one-on-one made such a big revelation: Rahul Gandhi
Sep 22, 2018
15:33 (IST)
It is a question of the dignity of the office of the prime minister. Not just that it is a question of our nation's security, of the security of our soldiers: Rahul Gandhi
Sep 22, 2018
15:32 (IST)
Congress addressed a press conference on the Rafale deal controversy. He said,"Desh ka chowkidar chor hai (the country's guard is a thief)."
Sep 22, 2018
14:21 (IST)
Francois Hollande has said he stands by his statement, his office told NDTV today.

His comment comes even as the French government and Dassault Aviation, the maker of the Rafale jet, last night contradicted his statement.

Read more here
Sep 22, 2018
13:11 (IST)
Union Minister Ananth Kumar came up with a strong comeback. "Nailing the lie on its head -- misinformation about Rafael deal, Dassault being called out by the French government (sic)," he wrote on Twitter.
Sep 22, 2018
11:38 (IST)
"French statement conceals more than it reveals. The French government knows verbal interactions between Hollande and Indian interlocutors are minuted and would emerge. Speculation of French Parliamentary hearing into Rafale and access to administrative Documents under France's Freedom of Information Law 1978 is rife": Congress spokesperson Manish Tiwari wrote on Twitter.
Sep 22, 2018
11:26 (IST)
Other French companies also need to fulfil their offset obligations in the deal. These companies are Safran, which manufactures the engines of the Rafale, MBDA, which is providing many of the weapon systems and Thales, which manufactures the avionics of the fighter.
Sep 22, 2018
09:56 (IST)
The deal to purchase 36 Rafale fighter jets from France was announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2015 and signed in 2016.
Sep 22, 2018
09:37 (IST)
"This offsets contract is delivered in compliance with the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) 2016 regulations. In this framework, and in accordance with the policy of Make in India, Dassault Aviation has decided to make a partnership with India's Reliance Group. This is Dassault Aviation's choice," Dassault statement said. Read the full text here.
Sep 22, 2018
08:05 (IST)
NDTV spoke with French journalist Antonne Rouget, who revealed the story about former French president Francois Hollande's bombshell that the Indian government had proposed Anil Ambani's Reliance Defence as the India partner in the multi-million dollar Rafale jet deal and not given them a choice.

He said,"We revealed the underside of the sale of the 36 Rafales manufactured by the French group Dassault for India. As part of this investigation, we questioned Francois Hollande who was the French President until 2017 and who managed this dossier personally. And he clearly told us that in the context of the discussions around the Rafale contract, the Indian partner of the Dassault group, on the sidelines, was proposed by the Indian government..."

Sep 22, 2018
08:01 (IST)
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal launched a scathing attack at the Modi government.
Sep 22, 2018
07:54 (IST)
The Reliance Defence, led by Anil Ambani, is manufacturing aerospace components as part of the offset component of the Rafale deal. The clause requires Rafale manufacturer Dassault to ensure that business worth around Rs. 30,000 crores is generated for the Indian defence system.
Sep 22, 2018
07:52 (IST)
On Friday, French journal Mediapart had quoted France's ex-President Francois Hollande as saying: "We did not have a say in this... the Indian government proposed this service group and Dassault negotiated with (Anil) Ambani group. We did not have a choice, we took the partner who was given to us."
Sep 22, 2018
07:50 (IST)
The French government's statement said French companies have complete freedom to choose Indian partner companies in the Rafale deal. "In accordance with India's acquisition procedure, French companies have the full freedom to choose the Indian partner companies that they consider to be the most relevant, then present for the Indian government's approval the offsets projects that they wish to execute in India with these local partners so as to fulfil their obligations in this regard," it said.
Sep 22, 2018
07:50 (IST)
Dassault Aviation in a statement said, "This offsets contract is delivered in compliance with the Defence Procurement Procedure (DPP) 2016 regulations. In this framework, and in accordance with the policy of Make in India, Dassault Aviation has decided to make a partnership with India's Reliance Group. This is Dassault Aviation's choice..."
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