Lok Sabha reconvenes, only to be adjourned till January 4, 11:00 AM owing to ruckus in the Parliament.
Randeep Singh Surjewala responds to Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman:
Rajya Sabha has been adjourned till 2:00 PM
Congress changes tack to demand minutes of India-France Meeting in Rajya Sabha.
Cong has walked out from Rajya Sabha over Rafale debate
"Only controversy is in your minds": Union Minister Sushma Swaraj hits back at Anand Sharma in Parliament
Rahul Gandhi tweets an attack at the Prime Minister for being in Punjab and not Parliament on Thursday
Raksha Mantri Nirmala Sitharaman to reply to all of Rahul Gandhi's questions on the Rafale issue in Parliament, as per sources
Congress president Rahul Gandhi is unlikely to back down in his continued efforts to pinpoint a 'scam' in the Rafale deal and has shot off four questions to the Prime Minister for what he has called an "open-book exam", asking him why an amount of Rs 1,600 crore was paid for each aircraft instead of Rs 560 crore and why the contract was given to "AA", an abbreviation used for the Reliance Group's Anil Ambani, and not the public sector Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).
"The PM faces an Open Book Rafale Deal Exam in Parliament."
"Here are the exam questions in advance: Q1. Why 36 aircraft, instead of the 126 the IAF needed? Q2. Why 1,600 Cr instead of 560 Cr per aircraft. Q3. Modi ji, please tell us why Parrikar ji keeps a Rafale file in his bedroom & what's in it? Q4. Why AA instead of HAL? Will he show up? Or send a proxy?," the Congress chief said on Twitter.
Gandhi launched an offensive against the Prime Minister in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday and later addressed a press conference. Stepping up his attack over the Rafale issue, Rahul Gandhi used an audio clip to allege that Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar was "blackmailing" Modi with a file on the Rs 58,000-crore fighter jets deal "lying in his bedroom".
Citing an audio clip of a conversation purportedly of Goa minister Vishwajit Rane, Gandhi said he could be clearly heard saying that Parrikar told his cabinet during a meeting that all documents relating to the Rafale deal were with him. When he made to play this tape out on the floor of the house, Rahul Gandhi was faced with mass opposition and a challenge to authenticate the tape from Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. Appearing on Republic TV later, Jaitley issued a point-by-point counter to Rahul Gandhi's claims on pricing, accusing him of comparing unequals -- i.e. the UPA's price for non-weaponised Rafale fighters versus the NDA's price for weaponised jets -- and also put forth that the Congress president wasn't even listening to the responses. In the house, Jaitley had point blank refused to entertain the demand for a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) to look into the deal. The Prime Minister is scheduled to address a public meeting in Punjab's Gurdaspur on Thursday.
(With PTI inputs)