New Delhi:The Congress on Sunday demanded that the Centre make public the minutes of the meeting (MoM) between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and former French President Francois Hollande, which culminated in the Rafale fighter aircraft deal.
“The draft of the joint statement of the Indian Prime Minister and the French President did not have any mention on Rafale deal. We want the government to publicly place the minutes of meeting held between the two leaders,” senior Congress leader Anand Sharma told reporters.
“What is there to hide?”, he asked.
The former Union Minister also invited the Prime Minister for an open debate on the Rafale deal.
“If there is no corruption involved, then the government should release the MoM. By not doing so, it is clearly evident that the Prime Minister is hiding something and he is involved in corruption. The former French President had already said that the Indian government recommended a partner,” he said.
Questioning the veil of secrecy on Rafale, Sharma said a joint statement between two countries is usually negotiated and prepared in advance.
“… and if purchase of Rafale fighter jets in fly-away condition was discussed, why was it not included in the joint statement. The Prime Minister should not remain silent on the deal,” he said.
He also shared details of the meeting between top officials of the Indian Air Force, Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) and the Rafale manufacturers Dassault.
“The contract was snatched away from HAL, wherein Dassault had agreed on transfer-of-technology. Instead, a deal was made for 36 jets and HAL was not involved at all,” Sharma said.