Left sees red on Israeli missile deal
CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat and his CPI counterpart AB Bardhan have written to the Prime Minister, questioning a missile deal worth Rs 10,000 crore with a “tainted” Israeli arms maker, reports Zia Haq.delhi Updated: Feb 11, 2009 00:05 IST
Looking to corner the Congress-led UPA government for its alleged Israel tilt, two Left parties have written to the Prime Minister, questioning a plum missile deal worth Rs 10,000 crore with a “tainted” Israeli arms-maker.
In their letter, the chiefs of Communist Party of India (Marxist) and Communist Party of India, Prakash Karat and A.B. Bardhan said they were surprised that such an expensive deal had been signed with the Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), a firm being investigated by the CBI for allegedly paying kickbacks in an earlier deal.
“The norm is to blacklist a firm until (it is) cleared,” Karat told HT. The IAI is being investigated for paying kickbacks in the anti-ship Barak missile system deal, he said. “It (the deal) involves systems that have yet to be developed by IAI, let alone manufactured and test proven,” the letter said about the new missile deal.
Asked if it pointed to wrongdoings, Karat said: “This only suggests the clout Israel has.”
“This deal again brings out the unfortunate influence that Israeli arms manufacturers including government-owned entities assert on India’s arms purchases,” the letter said.