Self Goal? Congress Cites Bofors In Rafale Criticism, Gets Roasted

Politics

Mallikarjun Kharge dubbed the entire sequence of Rajnath Singh receiving the first Rafale jet in France, which included the Shastra Puja as a “tamasha”

Written By Akhil Oka | Mumbai | Updated On:
Shastra Puja

Senior Congress leader and former Member of Parliament Mallikarjun Kharge dubbed the entire sequence of Defence Minister Rajnath Singh receiving the first Rafale jet in France as a “tamasha” (drama). He recalled that the Congress did not “show off” in such a fashion when weapons like Bofors were purchased during their regime. These comments come a day after Singh performed Shastra Puja (worship of weapons) on the occasion of Dussehra. During this process, he emblazoned the aircraft with an ‘Om’ and laid flowers, coconut and lemons to ward off the evil eye.  

Kharge said, "There is no need to do such 'tamasha' (drama). When we bought weapons-like the Bofors gun previously purchased, no one went and brought them while showing off.” 

Read: Rajnath Singh Flies 35-minute Sortie In India's First Rafale Jet

‘These people go, show off’ 

He even cast aspersions about the capability of the Rafale, observing that the Indian Air Force (IAF) officers would be the best individuals to judge this. Kharge also took a dig at the sortie Singh took in the aircraft. 

"These people go, show off, sit inside (the aircraft),'"he opined. 

Read: IAF To Get First Rafale: Here Is What This Fighter Jet Is Capable Of

Bofors mention gets roasted online

Twitterati were quick to pick up on the mention, pointing out the elephant in the room:

The BJP did not waste much time in getting back at Kharge. It alleged that the Congress had a problem with the modernization of the Air Force and the Indian traditions. The party also raked up the Bofors scam.  

Read: 'BJP And Other Oppositions Spinning Stories About Congress': Kharge

The Rafale Deal   

The government of India signed a deal with the French government and Dassault Aviation to procure 36 Rafale fighter jets to bolster India’s urgent requirement on the eastern and western borders in September 2016. It costs more than 7.8 billion euros. Being a 4.5 generation aircraft, it will become IAF's most modern fighter jet. Furthermore, missiles like the Meteor and the Scalp would ensure that the IAF can strike enemy territory nearly 600 km away without crossing the air space. Some of the other India-specific modifications include radar warning receivers, low band jammers, 10-hour flight data recording, infra-red search and tracking systems. 

(With ANI inputs)

Read: Sanjay Nirupam Attacks Congress Leader Mallikarjun Kharge On Twitter

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