Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in Karnataka on Monday for inauguration of a Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) factory, took a swipe at Congress leader Rahul Gandhi without taking his name. This is the first time PM has reacted to the allegations levelled by Congress leader on Rafale jets deal ahead of 2019 general election.
PM Modi today reached Tumakuru district in Karnataka to inaugurate HAL's helicopter factory. Defence minister Rajnath Singh and other senior officials of the defence ministry were also present for the inauguration.
Addressing the inauguration event in poll-bound Karnataka, PM Modi said: "Karnataka is the land of innovation. From drones to Tejas aircraft manufacturing is being done in the state. The state has become the first choice for investors. From modern assault rifles, aircraft carrier, to fighter jets are being manufactured by India."
PM hits back at Rahul over Rafale allegations
Reacting for the first time to the allegations levelled by Rahul Gandhi regarding the Rafale jet deal with French company Dassault Aviation ahead of 2019 Lok Sabha elections, PM Modi said: "Misinformation was spread about HAL, & many false allegations were made against our govt. Many working hours of Parliament were wasted over it. HAL's Helicopter Factory & its rising power will unveil those who levelled false allegations. HAL boosting self-reliance in defence."
In 2019, Rahul Gandhi had accused the Indian government of corruption in the procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets from France. He claimed that the government has overpaid for the jets and favored a particular Indian industrialist by granting him a contract for offset obligations under the deal instead of giving it to the HAL. The government had rejected these allegations, claiming that the deal was done at a competitive price and that the offset contract was awarded through a fair and transparent process. The matter has been the subject of political and legal controversies in India, with both sides presenting conflicting evidence to support their claims.
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