January 03, 2019:
Amid digs and counter-digs during the debate on the Rafale deal in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi brought up allegations that “failed” businessman Anil Ambani was being benefited and the cost of the plane had escalated three-fold, saying he would refer to the businessman as “AA”.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley countered, saying it was necessary to remind the Congress leader that he had played in the lap of Bofors middleman Ottavio Quattrocchi as a child.
Jaitley ruled out a JPC probe saying there was no need for such a measure as the Supreme Court has already satisfied its “conscience” on the issue.
Jaitley said, “There are some people who have a natural dislike for the truth. Every word spoken for the last six months on this subject, including in this House (by them) are false. He (Rahul) has a legacy of speaking falsehood.”
Rahul referred to Modi’s interview that no personal allegation was leveled against him and said this was not true as the “entire nation” is asking him a direct question on the contract for the purchase of the fighter aircraft.
The FM noted that the price of the “bare aircraft” has been revealed and that the price of the “weaponized” version cannot be given as it would help India’s adversaries.
He asserted that the bare aircraft was 9% cheaper than the one negotiated by the UPA and the weaponized version was 20% cheaper.