- Shatrughan Sinha urged PM Modi to "speak up" on the Rafale deal
- He said the party was run by PM Modi and Amit Shah
- He has often gone against party line and criticised government's policies
Dissident BJP lawmaker Shatrughan Sinha has stepped up his attacks on the Narendra Modi government on the Rafale deal. Addressing a public meeting in Lucknow on Thursday, he urged Prime Minister Modi to "speak up" on the deal for the 36 fighter jets.
"Why was Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, which has experience of manufacturing MiGs and Sukhoi sidelined and a 10-day-old company with (virtually) zero balance and zero experience given the contract?" asked the BJP lawmaker, flanked by former BJP leader Yashwant Sinha and former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav.
He said that power should be a medium to serve the people "not to reap dividends".
The three leaders were addressing a gathering to commemorate the birth anniversary of Loknayak Jayaprakash Narayan.
Shatrughan Sinha has often gone against his party line and criticised the Union government's policies. Defending his opposition towards the Narendra Modi government, he said "If speaking the truth is considered as mutiny, then I am a mutineer".
"Making hollow promises, giving speeches and indulging in rhetoric will not work anymore. The party is always bigger than a person and the country is bigger than the party. If I am speaking in the interest of the country, then what is wrong in it?" he asked.
The lawmaker from Patna Sahib accused the BJP of being a "one man show, two-man army" referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah.
"A few days ago, Yashwant Sinha was asked to compare the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government and the current one headed by Narendra Modi. He said that during the Vajpayee regime, there was lokshaahi (democracy), today there is tanashaahi (dictatorship). I say that this is a one-man-show, two-man-army," Shatrughan Sinha said.
This is only the latest in his series of attacks on the government on the Rafale deal.
On September 27, Mr Sinha had tweeted demanding that Prime Minister Modi "break his silence" on the deal.