CHANDIGARH: Union minister Jitendra Singh Monday said Congress president Rahul Gandhi should apologise to the people of the country, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the armed forces after the Supreme Court “exposed his lies” on the Rafale jet deal.

Addressing a press conference here, Singh said the Congress chief should reveal his source of information for allegations regarding the fighter jet deal and his party should give answers to the people of the country.

The Union minister was speaking as part of the BJP’s move to hold press conferences in 70 cities across the country to attack the opposition party against the backdrop of the Supreme Court’s verdict on the Rafale jet deal last week.

“The Supreme Court has exposed their lies,” the minister said, adding Congress’s “misinformation” regarding Rafale jets’ pricing, procedure and offset partner, has been exposed.

He claimed Gandhi led this “misinformation campaign” from the front.

“So, question arises that after Supreme Court’s verdict, should he not own the moral responsibility and resign from his post,” he said.

The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed the pleas challenging the deal between India and France for procurement of 36 Rafale jets, saying there was no occasion to “really doubt the decision making process” warranting setting aside of the contract.

The Congress has repeatedly criticised the deal for the 36 Rafale jets, alleging that the government was procuring each aircraft at a cost of over Rs 1,670 crore as against Rs 526 crore finalised by the UPA government.

The government has, however, denied any irregularity in the deal.

“Gandhi should apologise to the people, whom they misled with their misinformation campaign, to the prime minister for whom he used such words like chowkidar chor hai…Should he not tender an apology to country’s armed forces whose morale they tried to lower by creating a perception that there were irregularities in this deal,” Singh said.

Accompanied by Chandigarh BJP president Sanjay Tandon, Singh said that the government had always maintained that it was ready to debate on all issues in Parliament, but the Congress did not allow it to happen.

“They have washed out every session. Outside the Parliament, they tell the media that government does not allow debate, but inside the House, they disturb the proceedings. They don’t have courage and conviction to engage in a debate,” Singh claimed.

He also slammed the Congress for making the “sensitive” issue a matter of public debate.



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