Sitharaman’s France visit is ‘#GreatRafaleCoverUp’: Rahul declares PM Modi ‘corrupt’

New Delhi: Following French media’s fresh revelation that Dassault was allegedly made to choose Reliance for joint venture in a trade-off to win the 59,000-crore Rafale deal, Congress chief Rahul Gandhi on Thursday made a scathing attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi – by declaring him “corrupt” and “PM of Anil Ambani”.

‘Sitharaman’s visit is a huge cover-up’

  • “It is absolutely clear that the prime minister is corrupt. I repeat, the prime minister of India is a corrupt man… and sadly, his entire campaign was on fighting corruption,” Rahul Gandhi said at a press conference in the Congress office.
  • “He is actually not your prime minister. He is Anil Ambani’s prime minister,” the Congress president charged, not providing any evidence to back his allegations against PM Modi.
  • The Congress president questioned Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s visit to France, suggesting that it was part of a “huge cover-up”

  • “Now you see the defence minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, suddenly leaving for France… that too to visit Dassault… One wonders what the emergency is,” he questioned.
  • Gandhi alleged that the defence minister had gone to “put pressure” on Dassault. “And let me make one more thing very clear… Dassault is sitting on a massive contract… It will obviously say whatever the Indian government wants it to say. But look at the internal documentation in Dassault… that makes it clear as to what had happened”,” he claimed.

‘Entire Gandhi family is corrupt’

  • Reacting to Gandhi’s “corrupt man” attack, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) accused the Congress president of “lying” and said that the entire Gandhi family is “corrupt.”
  • In a press conference, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra demanded an answer from Rahul, for not approaching the Supreme Court, if he claims to have all documents to prove corruption.
  • In regard to Rahul’s statement – where he claimed that even former French president has termed PM Modi corrupt – Patra challenged the Congress chief to produce a statement where Francois Hollande has claimed thus.

Earlier in the day, the French investigative journal Mediapart had revealed that the alliance with Anil Ambani’s Reliance had been presented as a “trade-off” for the 36 jet deal to the aviation company to obtain the contract for the sale of Rafale jets and enter the Indian market. Dassault Aviation, however, denied the report and said it “has freely chosen to make a partnership with India’s Reliance Group”.