Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Friday went full throttle to attack Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the Rafale deal and demanded him to be investigated for "weakening the national security" in addition to "corruption". "In addition to corruption, the PM should be investigated for weakening national security by giving the Rafale contract to his friend and international debt master, Anil Ambani," the Congress president wrote on Twitter sharing a news article in which Swedish firm Ericsson sought jail for Anil Ambani. According to the media report Rahul Gandhi shared, Telecom equipment maker Ericsson filed a contempt petition in the Supreme Court against Reliance Communications’ Chairman Anil Ambani.
In its plea, Ericsson sought the court that Anil Ambani should be sent to jail and barred from overseas travel unless he pays Rs 550 crore owed to the Swedish firm. Anil Ambani has also been given the Rafale deal contract as an offshore partner of Dassault Aviation – the French defence firm responsible for manufacturing the fighter aircraft.
The scathing attack on the prime minister came a day after Gandhi accused that Modi "fled" his "open book Rafale exam" by not showing up in Parliament when the issue was discussed.
On Wednesday, the Congress president had dared the prime minister of having a 20-minute one-on-one debate on the Rafale deal issue, saying the truth will come out if he accepts the challenge. The Gandhi scion claimed that Modi single-handedly changed the contract and said, "he can go home during a debate (in Parliament), but he cannot hide".
Referring to Modi's France visit in 2015 when he announced the deal, Rahul Gandhi said, "The person who went to France with all pomp and show, he can't reply and stand in Parliament, but it is the finance minister who is standing in defence and that too is hollow."
This wasn’t the first time the Congress chief had demanded probe against Modi for the alleged corruption in the 58,000 crore Rafale deal. In October 2018, Rahul Gandhi termed Modi a “corrupt man” and demanded a probe against him for helping his businessman “friend” Anil Ambani pocket Rs 30,000 crore in the purchase of 36 aircraft.
"The reality is that the prime minister is corrupt. The prime minister of India is a corrupt person, but he came to power on the promise of fighting corruption. In the Rafale contract, the prime minister has indulged in clear cut corruption and there should be an investigation on it," he had said.
The Opposition parties led by Congress president Rahul Gandhi have been alleging irregularities in the Rafale deal. They are demanding a joint parliamentary probe (JPC) into the allegations. However, the Narendra Modi government rebutted all the allegations and refused the JPC demand.