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Sunday, Aug 18, 2019

Congress pushes for JPC in Rafale deal, says Centre misled Supreme Court on facts

About the SC judgment on the deal that bailed out the Centre, Gohil contended that the party did not go to the court as it was aware about its limitations in such matters

patna Updated: Dec 22, 2018 12:11 IST
Subhash Pathak
Subhash Pathak
Hindustan Times, Patna
All India Congress Committee (AICC) General Secretary and in-charge of Bihar affairs of the party Shakti Singh Gohil addresses the media at Sadaqat Ashram in Patna Bihar India on Friday
All India Congress Committee (AICC) General Secretary and in-charge of Bihar affairs of the party Shakti Singh Gohil addresses the media at Sadaqat Ashram in Patna Bihar India on Friday(Santosh Kumar/ HT Photo)
         

The Congress on Friday stuck to its demand for joint parliamentary committee (JPC) probe into the Rafale deal, alleging that the Centre had misled the Supreme Court on facts.

Party’s national spokesman and Bihar in-charge Shaktisinh Gohil alleged that the Centre was avoiding the JPC, as their foul play that led to 300% escalation of cost of the fighter jet and its apparent bid to favour a private company at the cost of a government installation, Hindustan Aeronautical Limited (HAL), would get exposed.

“Why the Narendra Modi government was running away from the JPC? BJP asked for JPC for Bofors deal and 2G cases, and the then Congress-led UPA government ordered it. If the government is fair in the Rafale deal, why the government is scared,” wondered Gohil.

About the SC judgment on the deal that bailed out the Centre, Gohil contended that the party did not go to the court as it was aware about its limitations in such matters. “The SC in its order also quoted that it was made clear that pricing and matters related to technical suitability of the equipment would not be gone through by the court,” said the Congress leader.

Quoting another paragraph of the SC judgment, Gohil said that the Court state it that its ‘views were primarily from the stand point of the exercise of the jurisdiction under Article 32 of the Constitution, which had been invoked in the present group of cases’. “This is illogical for the Centre to claim the SC clean chit to the case,” he added.

He said that only the JPC was an appropriate forum to try such cases, as it, unlike the SC, the authority to scrutinise the files and noting on them. “The JPC can ask for explanation as why the Dassault aviation bought shares of Anil Ambani’s defunct company worth Rs 8 lakh at 1100% higher than their value,” said Gohil.

The Congress leader said that if the Congress-led alliance came to power, it would review the Rafale deal. He claimed that views of other technical committees of defence were overlooked in finalising the deal by the Centre.

First Published: Dec 22, 2018 12:11 IST

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