Mayawati asks PM Modi to explain why no Rafale jet arrived during his government

Lucknow: BSP supremo Mayawati on Monday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to explain why “not a single Rafale” fighter jet got inducted into the Indian Air Force (IAF) fleet since he came to power at the Centre.

She tweeted, “Rafale fighter could have proved useful in a fight against Pak, claims PM Modi in his rallies. Even then not a single Rafale inducted into IAF fleet during his govt. Better explain to people why this kind of lapse and neglect even by the BJP on the issue of the country’s safety and security?”

Her statement comes two days after Prime Minister Modi while talking about the IAF strike at a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) camp in Balakot in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, said the entire nation felt the absence of Rafale fighter planes.

Addressing the India Today Conclave here, he said on Saturday, “Today, the entire nation has felt the absence of Rafale. Had we got Rafale, the result today could have been different. Initially, people were doing ‘Swaarthneeti’ on it. Today they are doing politics on the same. The country has suffered a lot because of this.”

Later, Congress president Rahul Gandhi criticised Prime Minister Modi over the ‘delay’ in the delivery of Rafale jets, claiming that IAF pilots like Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman were “risking their lives by flying outdated jets”.

Gandhi also claimed that Prime Minister Modi was “solely responsible” for the “delay” in the arrival of Rafale jets.