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Rafale deal: Rahul Gandhi accuses Sitharaman of ‘lying’

The Congress president says a Dassault report called RM’s (defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman) lie and released prices paid per RAFALE plane.

india Updated: Mar 16, 2018 19:14 IST
Indo Asian News Service, New Delhi
Rafale deal,Rahul Gandhi,Nirmala Sitharaman
A French fighter aircraft Rafale takes off during the 11th biennial edition of AERO INDIA 2017 at Yelahanka Air base in Bengaluru. (PTI file photo )

Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Friday accused defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman of allegedly lying on the price paid per Rafale aircraft, citing a Dassault report.

“Dassault called RM’s (defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman) lie and released prices paid per RAFALE plane in report,” he said in a series of tweets.

“Qatar 1319 crore, MODI (Prime Minister Narendra Modi) 1670 crore, Manmohan Singh (MMS) 570 crore,” he wrote, citing the Dassault Aviation Annual Report 2016.

“1,100 crore per plane or 36,000 crore i.e 10 percent of our defence budget, in the pocket.”

“Meanwhile, our Army begs our government for money,” he added, attaching a couple of pages from the report.

The Narendra Modi government on Wednesday ruled out any plan to issue a White Paper on the Rafale fighter jet deal, which has been questioned by opposition parties.

Congress MP KV Thomas, in a written question in the Lok Sabha, had asked if the government had been urged to issue a White Paper on the Rafale deal by “defence experts as well as some political leaders”, and its reaction. But Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre replied in the negative to both the questions.

The Opposition Congress had alleged that the deal for 36 Rafale fighter planes with the French government was finalised at a higher price than the previous deal for 126 medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA).

First Published: Mar 16, 2018 19:13 IST