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Sunday, Nov 17, 2019

‘Truth will put him in jail’: Rahul Gandhi ups Rafale attack on PM Modi

On his daylong visit to Tamil Nadu, Rahul Gandhi stepped up attack at PM Modi accusing him of trying to undermine the Tamil culture to further his party’s ideology. 

lok-sabha-elections Updated: Mar 13, 2019 18:30 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Kanniyakumari, Tamil Nadu
Congress president Rahul Gandhi upped his campaign against Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying if truth comes out in the Rafale deal, he will go to jail.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi upped his campaign against Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying if truth comes out in the Rafale deal, he will go to jail.(ANI)

Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday stepped up attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying that he “will go to jail” if truth in Rafale deal comes out in the open. He said PM Modi does not want truth to come out in Rafale deal.

“Truth will put Mr Narendra Modi in jail,” Gandhi said at his rally in Tamil Nadu’s Kanniyakumari. He said the Congress-led UPA government had decided to give the “biggest defence deal in the world” to the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).

“Narendra Modi becomes the prime minister in 2014. He snatches the contract from HAL and gives it to Anil Ambani. An aircraft worth Rs 500 crore was purchased for Rs 1,600 crore,” said Gandhi. India and France signed the Rs 59,000 crore Rafale deal in 2016 for the purchase of 36 fighter jets from French firm, Dassault Aviation.

The negotiating team wrote in defence files that the prime minister is conducting a parallel negotiation with France, said the congress president adding, “The entire foundation is built on lies.”

In his speech, Gandhi also invoked former DMK chief M Karunanidhi to target PM Modi. He said Kalaignar, as Karunanidhi was popularly referred to as by his followers, represented the spirit of Tamil people and culture which face threat from PM Modi.

Gandhi showered lavish praise on the former Tamil Nadu chief minister Karunanidhi, who passed away in August 2018, at his election rally in Kanniyakumari. “I regret that I did not spend much more time with Kalaignar,” said Gandhi.

With DMK chief MK Stalin by his side at a public rally in Kanniyakumari, Gandhi said, “This is not simply an alliance (between the two parties). This is a meeting of hearts and minds. We are here because we see a threat to Tamil history, Tamil culture and Tamil history. It is coming from Mr Narendra Modi.”

“We will not allow Mr Narendra Modi to destroy the Tamil culture, language and history,” he said.

The Congress president also targeted the EK Palaniswami government in Tamil Nadu alleging that it is being controlled by PM Modi from Delhi. “It is an insult to the people of Tamil Nadu…There has never been a government before in Tamil Nadu which was controlled from Delhi,” said Gandhi.

“You will see that in the election of 2019, the spirit of the Tamil people will win,” he said.

The AIADMK and the BJP recently announced their seat sharing pact for the Lok Sabha election. The alliance also has the PMK and PT, NJP and NR Congress as partners for the 40 Lok Sabha seats in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. The BJP would contest five Lok Sabha seats while the AIADMK would field candidates in 27 parliamentary constituencies.

Gandhi claimed that the 2019 election will see a defeat of the BJP-AIADMK alliance in Tamil Nadu, which goes to polls on April 18 in the second phase of the Lok Sabha polls. The state would go assembly polls in 2021, for which Gandhi made a prediction. The Congress president said, “Stalin is going to be the next chief minister of Tamil Nadu.”

The Congress is contesting 10 Lok Sabha seats under the seat sharing pact with the DMK in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry. The two parties had contested the Lok Sabha polls in 2014 separately after the DMK walked out of the Congress-led UPA in 2013.