Modi Govt Working Not for Self-Reliance, But For ‘Self and Reliance’: CPI(M) MP Mohammed Salim Tears Into Govt Over Rafale Scam
“Those who cannot run the Delhi metro, we are asking that company to partner Dassault and make our aircrafts,” he added.
Mohammed Salim, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) Member of Parliament from Raiganj, tore into finance minister Arun Jaitley’s statements in his address in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday, January 2.
Reiterating the questionability of the number of Rafale jets being brought down to 36 from the initial 126, Salim said, “…Firstly, the truth has to be told. Until now, even today, the minister (Jaitley) has not answered why, from 126, this (the number of Rafale jets to be procured) has become 36. They (the Bharatiya Janata Party) are talking about national security… So, in the end, on that basis, from 2001 until 2016, why was it (number of Rafale jets) reduced? Has the challenge of national security lessened?”
Then, countering Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s tall claims of ‘Make in India’, Salim mocked, “… Why have we been saying ‘Make in India’ after independence, especially in defence production? (It is for) self-reliance. From Nehru’s time until now, we have wanted self-reliance. Madam, these are two hyphenated words but what are we seeing? That the hyphen has been removed (and) in this Modi regime, it has been made into ‘self and reliance’.” Insisting that the BJP was not working towards the nation’s interest, Salim went on to emphasise, “Government is not working for ‘self-reliance’ but for ‘self and reliance’. This is why there is a corruption charge.”
Towards the end of his address, Salim also slammed the BJP overlooking the experienced Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to favour the Anil Ambani-led Reliance Defence in the Rafale deal. “Those who cannot run the Delhi metro, we are asking that company to partner Dassault and make our aircrafts,” Salim derided.