Congress demands JPC probe into Rafale deal after France begins judicial inquiry

Congress party on Saturday once again reiterated its demand for a joint parliamentary committee (JPC) probe into Rafale deal after France launched a judicial probe into the same on June 14.

The Congress demand came after a day France ordered a judicial probe into the allegations of graft in 36 Rafale fighter jets deal with India.

A French judge is appointed to lead a “highly sensitive” judicial investigation into the alleged “corruption and favouritism” in the Rs 59,000 crore Rafale fighter jets deal, a French investigative website Mediapart reported.

Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala, addressing a press conference virtually said, “The scandalous expose of Rafale scam involving corruption, treason, loss to public exchequer has finally been uncovered.”

He further stated that if the functioning of Ex French President Francois Hollande and present Prez Emmanuel Macron is being investigated, then why can’t the Ex Indian Defence Minister and an Indian company be investigated too.

A French media outlet has exposed the deal between Dassault and an Indian company which constituted a joint venture, he said

“This substantiates the statement made by then President Francois Hollande, who said that the decision to appoint an Indian company as Dassault’s industrial partner was of the Indian government, meaning the Modi government. And the French had no choice into the matter,” Surjewala noted.

He further said Prime Minister Narendra Modi signed a deal worth 7.8 billion euro to purchase 36 Rafale jets instead of 126 fighter jets.

The Congress spokesperson pointing out the French government said they deleted the anti-corruption clause, adding “The defects now clearly call for a JPC probe,” he said.

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