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Rafale Deal: Rahul Gandhi fires fresh salvo, accuses PM Modi of frequently changing Def Mins to keep negotiations a secret

The fresh attack by Gandhi comes hours after filed gave notices for breach of privilege against PM Modi and Defence Minister Sitharaman in Lok Sabha for “misleading” the House on the Rafale deal issue.

Reported by: India TV Politics Desk, New Delhi [ Updated: July 24, 2018 21:06 IST ]
File photo of Rahul Gandhi
Image Source : PTI

File photo of Rahul Gandhi

Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday levied fresh allegations against Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the alleged 'Rafale deal scam'. Gandhi claimed that PM Modi rotated four defence ministers in last four years to ensure that no one but him knew the full details of the jet deal with French company. 

"Since 2014, India has had 4 revolving Raksha Mantris. Now we know why. It gave the PM space to personally re-negotiate RAFALE with the French. India has had 4 “RAFALE Mantris”. But, none of them know what really transpired in France. Except the PM. But he won’t speak!," the Congress president tweeted along with an image of Amul advertisement featuring the news. 

In the four years of Modi government, the defence ministry portfolio has been handled by Arun Jaitley (May-Nov 2014), Manohar Parrikar (Nov 2014 - Macrh 2017), Arun Jaitley (March-Sept 2017) and Nirmala Sitharaman (Sept 2017- current). 

The fresh attack by Gandhi comes hours after filed gave notices for breach of privilege against PM Modi and Defence Minister Sitharaman in Lok Sabha for “misleading” the House on the Rafale deal issue, news agency PTI reported. 

Quoting sources, the PTI report said that the notices were moved by Leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge, Veerappa Moily, KV Thomas, Jyotiraditya Scindia and Rajiv Satav.

The notices were given over the statements made by Modi and Sitharaman in Lok Sabha during the debate on the no-confidence motion on July 20. 

“The prime minister has along with the defence minister deliberately mislead the House, it is, therefore, requested that this notice of breach of privilege be accepted and referred to the privilege committee for further proceedings,” the notice against the prime minister says. 

The prime minister in his speech endorsed the defence minister’s claims, which contradicted the reply of his Minister of State for Defence in Lok Sabha on November 18, 2016 and in Rajya Sabha on March 19, 2018, the notice says. 

The prime minister’s claim of transparency in the 2008 confidentiality agreement with France is factually incorrect, untrue, and deliberately made with the intention to mislead the House, according to the notice.

The prime minister and his cabinet, as per the Constitution, are collectively accountable to Parliament and through it to the people of the country, it says.

The minister had knowingly and intentionally misled Parliament by withholding the information that the government is obliged to reveal to Parliament, the notice against Sitharaman says. 

(With PTI inputs)

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