Congress & TDP MPs heckle Arun Jaitley in Lok Sabha

Fiscal deficit, inflation are much better under NDA govt: Jaitely

Fiscal deficit, inflation are much better under NDA govt: Jaitely

The Modi-led BJP government, however, rowed back from the commitment of the last UPA government to buy 126 Rafales, saying the twin-engined planes would be too expensive and the deal fell through after almost decade-long negotiations between India and France.

He also advised Congress chief Rahul Gandhi to "learn" from former defence minister Pranab Mukherjee "lessons on national security".

His defence on the Rafale deal came after Congress president Rahul Gandhi had said Prime Minister Narendra Modi was not answering his questions on the deal because there was something "fishy" in it.

"My charge against you is now you are seriously compromising national security by seeking details of the Rafale deal", Jaitley said, in response to an intervention by Congress MP Shashi Tharoor, who said the government was accountable to Parliament for expenditure incurred by it. "Now do ask our Raksha Mantri to tell India how much each Rafale jet cost", he said.

Mr Jaitley, accusing the Opposition Congress of manufacturing corruption allegations against the government, said that it was in the larger interest of the country's security that the price of Rafale fighter jets is not disclosed.


Questioning the silence of the Prime Minister over the issue, he also asked why did Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman change her stance over revealing the price of the fighter aircraft.

"They're compromising national security by asking for details which should not be made public, by which I mean known to the enemy", Jaitley added.

In an earlier tweet in December a year ago, Gandhi had addressed the finance minister the same way. Secrecy is an inherent part of any deal.

Congress president Rahul Gandhi addressing the media at Parliament. "Which of her two statements are correct?" "We are very sympathetic to the people of Andhra Pradesh and would look into each one of these issues expeditiously", he said.

On proposals pertaining the Railway and Petroleum Ministries, he said: "We are already in discussion with various ministries, our friends from A.P. are also in discussion and we are trying to find out a solution".

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