Rafale Deal: We Asked For JPC Probe But NDA Refused. Will Go To People’s Court Now, Says Ghulam Nabi Azad
He alleged that media is not able to freely report on the fighter jet deal with NDA at the helm.
Q.1 Why has NDA government negotiated the deal for Rafale fighter jets with France at a higher cost than the UPA’s negotiation?
Q.2 Why is the NDA government shying away from a JPC probe in the Rafale Deal?
Hyderabad: Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad on Wednesday attacked the NDA government for not agreeing to a JPC probe into alleged irregularities in the Rafale fighter jet deal and said they would now go to the ‘people’s court’.
“One court is Parliament. We failed there. Not in raising, (in) obtaining an answer. We sought an inquiry. Government refused. We sought a JPC (Joint Parliamentary Committee). That was refused. When all these things are refused…now we are going to the people’s court,” he said.
Azad stated this to reporters here when asked whether the Congress planned to move the Supreme Court on the issue. He alleged that media is not able to freely report on the fighter jet deal with NDA at the helm. Congress has been attacking the NDA government, alleging a “scam” in the Rafale deal.
A delegation of senior Congress leaders on Wednesday met the Comptroller and Auditor General of India in Delhi on the deal, handed over a memorandum and requested the auditor to prepare a report on alleged irregularities in it.
The Congress said the federal auditor had told the party it is “already examining” the entire issue for its report to Parliament and assured all contentions raised would be looked into.
In the memorandum, the Congress accused the government of causing loss to the public exchequer and endangering national security by bypassing state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited in favour of some businessman “friends” for offset contract.
The party has alleged that the fresh deal for Rafale fighter jets with France was inked by the Modi government at a cost much higher than that negotiated by the previous UPA government headed by the party.
The government has been maintaining that HAL could not finalize the offset deal during the UPA dispensation as the then Manmohan Singh government did not support the public-sector aerospace company to enhance its infrastructure for manufacturing the aircraft in India under the transfer of technology.