New Delhi: Intensifying its battle against the Modi government over the Rafale deal, the Congress on Monday moved the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) seeking a probe and FIR as well as seizure of relevant documents pertaining to the deal which it claimed caused loss to the exchequer. An 11-member delegation led by Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad, met CVC K.V. Chowdary and submitted a memorandum asserting that the deal announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi was at an “escalated price of about 300 per cent” and done in violation of the Defence Procurement Policy (DPP).
The move to the CVC follows the Congress approaching the Comptroller and Auditor General of India for a special and forensic audit. It also comes amidst an intense political dogfight between the Congress and the BJP-led government over the deal. “This is the biggest defence scam of the century and we have asked the CVC to take cognisance and register a first information report against those guilty,” Congress leader Anand Sharma said after the meeting the CVC.
“The stench of corruption and cronyism in the Rafale deal is nauseating, requiring urgent intervention by your good self,” the party said in the memorandum to the CVC. It blamed the Modi government for causing a loss to the public exchequer of Rs 41,205 crore. The party sought a probe by the CVC claiming the “nearly 300 per cent cost increase in the price of Rafale aircraft smacked of causing loss to public exchequer in a malicious manner”. The Congress also targeted Modi and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for not disclosing the purchase price of the 36 aircraft citing confidentiality. “Their disclosure is even more intriguing when both Dassault and Reliance have disclosed the price in the Annual Report, 2016, and the press release dated February 16, 2017,” it said. (IANS)