The Bharatiya Janata Party suffered a major embarrassment in Uttarakhand on Saturday, when its MP and former chief minister BC Khanduri’s son Manish Khanduri joined the Congress at a rally addressed by party president Rahul Gandhi.
Gandhi took this occasion to target Prime Minister Narendra Modi explaining the “reason” why BC Khanduri’s son Manish Khanduri joined the Congress party.
“There is a reason why (Manish) Khanduriji is here,” Gandhi said adding, “BC Khanduri was the chairman of defence committee of Parliament. He gave his whole life for the country and the armed forces. But when he asked a question on national security in the committee saying the government is not doing what it should do to help the armed forces, Mr Narendra Modi removed him from his position.”
“There is no space for truth in the BJP,” Gandhi said at the mega rally in Uttarakhand, where he reiterated that the BJP-led government at the Centre was scared of a joint-parliamentary probe into the Rafale deal.
At his “Parivartan Rally” in Dehrudun, Gandhi launched fresh attack on PM Modi over Rafale deal alleging that he renegotiated the defence contract with France to help industrialist Anil Ambani. PM Modi had put a condition before France that if it wants to sell Rafale jets to India, “Anil Ambani must get the contract”, Gandhi said claiming that former French president Francois Hollande had revealed this.
The Congress president also linked the removal of former Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) chief Alok Verma from his position to Rafale deal. Gandhi said, “The CBI chief wanted to probe (Rafale deal) but Mr Narendra Modi removed him from his post at 1.30 in the night.”
Gandhi was addressing “Parivartan Rally” in Uttarkhand’s Dehradun, where the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party had to face a major embarrassment when party MP and former chief minister BC Khanduri’s son Manish Khanduri joined the Congress.
The Congress president has been relentless in his attack on the Modi government on the issue of Rafale deal. Gandhi has alleged malfeasance in the Rs 59,000 crore defence contract with France. He has maintained that the government paid “more” to the French firm Dassault Aviation, which manufactures Rafale fighter jets under the 2016 deal in comparison to the one being negotiated during the Congress-led UPA regime.
Gandhi claims that each Rafale jet was to cost Rs 500 under the UPA-era deal but the cost escalated to Rs 1,600 after the Modi government signed new agreement with the French government. The government has denied allegations of irregularities in the Rafale deal.
Mar 16, 2019 14:46 IST