On Rafale, Cong poses 11 questions to Prime Minister Modi

New Delhi: Congress party on Monday posed 11 questions on Rafale jet deal to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, seeking their answers or clarifications from him.

These questions have been posed to Prime Minister Modi by Congress national spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala through his Twitter.

Surjewala’s first question pertains to the report of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG). “The Supreme Court decision in Rafale is based on CAG report, but CAG had not given any report, neither it was placed in Parliament nor in Public Accounts Committee (PAC). Why such a big fraud with the Supreme Court,” Surjewala asked.

In his second question, Surjewala, while referring to the agreement between Reliance and Dassault Aviation, said, “The top court’s decision is based on the fact that Reliance had an agreement with Dassault since 2012. However, Reliance Defence Limited was formed on March 28 2015.”

In his third question, he alleged that the Apex Court’s decision is based on the fact that former French President Francois Hollande stated that Prime Minister Narendra Modi government had favoured Reliance. “While Hollande reiterated his statement, President Emmanuel Macron also had said that he cannot refute his statement,” said Surjewala.

The Congress spokesperson claimed that the government had submitted in the Apex Court that Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has nothing to do with the Rafale deal. However, he said that HAL and Dassault had entered into an agreement in March 2014 which was certified by both Dassault CEO and Foreign Secretary.

Surjewala’s fifth question pertains to the alleged objections raised by the Law Ministry that the Centre “hid” from the court, while his sixth allegation is that the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) has given its nod for procuring jets after the government decided to buy 36 jets, which Surjewala claims, is the breach of procedure.

In his ninth question, the Congress leader said that the Central government’s decision to buy 36 jets instead of 126 is a big compromise with the security of the nation and the Central government has not given any reason for the same in the Supreme Court.

“The government said that buying 36 Rafale jets is a profitable concern, while the Congress government was buying each Rafale for Rs 526 crore, Modi government brought it for Rs 1,670 crore each and thus cheated Rs 41, 205 crore of the public money,” said Surjewala.

On Friday, the Supreme Court dismissed petitions seeking a probe into the Rafale deal, saying it does not find any substantial material on record to show that this is a case of commercial favouritism to any party by the Government of India.

The Centre on Saturday filed an application seeking a correction in the order to make it clear that the pricing aspect, examined by the CAG has not been looked into by PAC as yet. In its application, accessed by the ANI, the Union Government pointed out that error in two sentences appeared to have occurred.