Digvijaya Singh takes aim at PM Narendra Modi over Rafale, says 'Chowkidaar couldn't be the real …

Key Highlights

  • 5 Rafale jets arrive in India in a boost to IAF’s combat capability
  • Modi government had inked a Rs 59,000-crore deal in 2016 to procure 36 Rafale jets
  • Digvijaya Singh claimed there is some top secret behind the Rafale deal

New Delhi: As the country takes pride with the arrival of five Rafale jets, Congress leader Digvijay Singh on Wednesday questioned Prime Minister and his government over the pricing of the 36 aircraft bought from France.

In a video message, the senior Congress leader said that we are happy that Rafale is today arriving in India. 

Taking aim at PM Modi, Singh said, “In 2012, the then Manmohan Singh-led government had decided to buy 126 Rafale jets, with each costing around Rs 746 crore. The then UPA government had decided that 18 jets will come in flyway condition from France and rest will be manufactured by HAL in the country.”

The Congress leader claimed that PM Modi without any cabinet approval, without any consultation with the defence ministry and finance ministry made an agreement with the France government on the Rafale deal.

Shockingly, when the country is in need of significant number of combat aircraft, the number of jets were reduced to 36 and there was no information on the final price or the negotiation process, he added.

“We have learnt that the total cost of the 36 Rafale jets stands at around at Rs 59,000 crore, which means that each aircraft will cost around Rs 1600 crore,” Singh said. He asked the government to reveal the reasons behind the increase in price.

The opposition has a right to question the government and it will continue to do so, Singh asserted.

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The Rajya Sabha MP claimed there is some top secret behind the Rafale deal which is still under wraps. “Why price negotiation details have not been shared? Why was there no consent taken from the opposition, Defence Ministry and concerning officers? Is the procurement not enough for national security? Chowkidaar couldn’t be the real chowkidaar of the nation,” Digvijaya said.

Five of the 36 Rafale jets today arrive in India in a boost to Indian Air Force’s combat capability. The Modi government had inked a Rs 59,000-crore deal in 2016 to procure 36 Rafale jets from Dassault Aviation in France.

Earlier today, while commenting after the arrival of the jets in Ambala, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said, “The Rafale jets were purchased when they fully met the operational requirements of the IAF. The baseless allegations against this procurement have already been answered and settled.” 

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