Raipur: Congress president Rahul Gandhi today termed the Rafale fighter jet deal as the country’s “biggest ever” defence scam and blamed Prime Minister Narendra Modi for it. Addressing an event here, he claimed that the price of the Rafale jets “magically” rose from Rs 540 to Rs 1600 crore per piece. India had signed an agreement in 2015 for procurement of 36 Rafale fighter planes from France.
“The UPA government had readied the Rafale contract, according to which the price for each jet was approximately Rs 540 crore. The contract was ready and Modi ji only had to take a decision.
“But, Modi Ji goes to France and scraps the previous contract and the Defence Minister and other cabinet ministers do not know about it,” Gandhi said.
The Congress leader alleged that a contract related to the fighter deal was snatched from the state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and given to a private company which has never made an aeroplane nor taken any defence contract.
“The company, which was given the contract, was in a debt of Rs 45,000 crore,” he claimed.
Gandhi, while speaking after inaugurating the newly- constructed office of the party’s state unit, also said that Modi has not yet spoken a word on the rape incidents in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Rajasthan. The situation has not been as bad in the “last 3000 years”, he said while referring to the rape incidents.