Defence Minister rubbishes Rahul's allegations on Rafale deal

Rafale deal was transparent Nirmala Sitharaman

Final price of each Rafale jet?

India is buying 36 Rafale fighter jets from France under a government-to-government agreement, and there have been talks of purchasing more of the fighter jets as a follow-on order.

"These allegations are shameful.The deal was finalised following a transparent procedure", Sitharaman told a press conference.

Speaking to reporters here on Saturday after interacting with the CII members, she said the BJP government is functioning without any sort of corruption, and this, in fact was why the Congress party was attempting to raise the issue now.

"It is not overpricing..."

But Sitharaman, despite repeated and pointed questions, did not provide the "comparative costs per aircraft" between the 36-fighter contract inked by the NDA government in September 2016 and the original 126-fighter deal under negotiation during the UPA government's tenure. "It is lower than what was there in the MRMCA contract", he said without going into specifics.

"You ask lots of questions from me".

The Defence Minister Nirmala Seetharaman rubbished the Congress allegations about the Rafale purchase contract and insisted that it is an Inter governmental deal between India and France where due diligence and proper procedure was followed before it was signed in September previous year. Why don't you ask frankly about these. Sitharaman also rejected Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi's demand+ that PM Modi must be questioned for "changing the Rafale deal to benefit a businessman" in the backdrop of fighter manufacturer Dassault Aviation setting up a joint venture with Anil Ambani's Reliance Defence to discharge the 50% offsets in the deal.

"Modiji nice touch removing the suit". Indian Air Force bases at Ambala in Haryana, close to the western border, and Hashimara in West Bengal, close to the China border, are set to home the squadrons of Rafale fighters. "Self "Reliance" is obviously a critical aspect of "Make in India", he had tweeted.

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