“The corruption and malfeasance in Rafale deal is out in the open. PM Modi misused his office to give benefits to Dassault Aviation and caused loss to the public exchequer”
Asserting that the Centre’s claim of the Rafale file being stolen was an attempt to destroy evidence and a cover-up, Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi should be prosecuted.
The Congress also said that even if the NDA government tries to “gag the media or/and arrest every citizen” the party will not be deterred from speaking the “truth.”
“There is now enough evidence to prosecute the PM in the #RafaleScam. The trail of corruption begins & ends with him. That crucial Rafale files incriminating him are now reported “stolen” by the Govt, is destruction of evidence & an obvious coverup,” Mr. Gandhi tweeted with the hash tag #FIRagainstCorruptModi.
“The time has now come to register an FIR against PM Modi and every other individual so that a time-bound investigation takes place in this entire saga of Rafale corruption reaching the highest echelons of power,” said Mr. Surjewala.
“It is now crystal clear that blatant and massive corruption has taken place in the Rafale deal. It is undoubtedly established that Modi ji misused his office as Prime Minister to grant undue benefit to Dassault Aviation and caused a loss to the public exchequer. This is a clear-cut case under Section 13 (1) (d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 and different provisions of Indian Penal Code,” he said.
The Congress extensively cited the Indian Negotiation Team (INT) to argue that Mr. Modi “misled Parliament and duped the country.”
The Congress alleged that despite insistence from the Defence, Law and Finance Ministries on taking a bank guarantee to the tune of ₹4305 crore from Dassault Aviation, the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS), chaired by the Prime Minister, waived it off.
Mr. Surjewala alleged that the Modi government’s publicly declared value of ₹59,000 crore to buy 36 Rafale fighter jets off the shelf doesn’t include ₹9750 crore for the India-specific enhancements (ISE). If these are added to the cost, then the deal is nearly ₹70,000 crore and the ISE per aircraft has gone from ₹82 crore during UPA to ₹271 crore under the NDA, he said.
The Congress also alleged that the decision to buy 36 Rafale jets was not taken by the INT but National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval, who was neither authorised by the INT nor the CCS.