On Rafale, Defamation Suits, Rahul Gandhi Baits Anil Ambani, Attacks BJP

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On Rafale, Defamation Suits, Rahul Gandhi Baits Anil Ambani, Attacks BJP

Rahul Gandhi alleges price of Rafale jets is higher than what was negotiated by UPA government.


New Delhi: 

Congress chief Rahul Gandhi continued his attack on the government on the Rafale deal, questioning today who was telling the truth -- Prime Minister Narendra Modi or former President of France Francois Hollande.

"India-France joint statement clearly states the 36 aircraft will be of the same configuration... Should we believe that then man standing next to PM was lying when he was giving this statement... The man (PM Modi) is lying," Mr Gandhi said.

India and France signed a deal worth Euro 7.87 billion (approximately Rs 59,000 crore) in September 2016 for 36 Rafale jets. The Congress says the UPA deal that was scrapped to form the new one was better, paying one-third the price for 126 aircraft.

A video tweeted by the party said the NDA deal also missed out on side benefits like technology transfer and generation of jobs, in contrast to the UPA deal that involved manufacture of a majority of the planes by the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited in Hyderabad.  

The Congress alleges that the government is paying a huge sum for the fighter jets to favour a businessman.

"Anil Ambani has Rs 45,000 crore debt... He formed the company 10 days before the deal. What is the deal between Anil Ambani and PM Modi?" Mr Gandhi questioned days after the industrialist wrote to him, expressing "deep anguish over continued personal attacks" on him.

In his letter, Mr Ambani said all 36 Rafale jets will be manufactured in France and exported. "Not a single component" will be manufactured by Reliance, the letter had clarified.

"Anil Ambani has filed many defamation cases against us. Keep filing these defamation suits... they will not change the truth," Mr Gandhi said  referring to Reliance Group's notice last week, that warned nine Congress leaders against making what it called "false and defamatory statements" on the Rafale deal.



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