Will Rafale issues go unexamined, Chidambaram asks Jaitley

New Delhi: A day after Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley ruled out a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe into the Rafale deal saying the Supreme Court verdict in the case is a “clean chit” to the Modi government, his predecessor P. Chidambaram on Monday wondered if the issues not decided by the apex court will go “unexamined”.

Batting for the apex court’s Friday verdict dismissing petitions seeking a probe into the alleged procedural and financial irregularities in the Rafale deal, Jaitley in his blog on Sunday had questioned the powers of a parliamentary committee to “review issues already decided by the Supreme Court”.

Taking to Twitter, Congress veteran Chidambaram questioned Jaitley’s assertions.

“Finance Minister (Jaitley) asks ‘Is a Committee of Politicians fit to review issues decided by SC?

“When Government/ Parliament amended the Atrocities Prevention Act to overrule the judgment of the SC, was it not a review by politicians of a judgment of the SC,” asked Chidambaram.

“Besides, several issues in the Rafale deal were not decided by the SC. Who will examine those issues? Or will they go unexamined?” he added.

Chidambaram’s attack comes amidst the Congress’ persistent demand for a JPC probe into the deal which it claims to be the country’s “biggest defence scam”.

The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) too has joined the chorus for a JPC, alleging the Narendra Modi government was trying to “hide behind half truths and lies” in the deal to purchase 36 fighter jets from France, announced by the Prime Minister in 2015.