Rafale Corruption: Complaint Filed to CBI Against PM Modi

#Mera_PM_Chor_Hai. Photo: Twitter
#Mera_PM_Chor_Hai. Photo: Twitter

While BJP leaders are defending Modi’s Rafale deal by giving loose political statements, they are not able to handle the specific queries related to the irregularities in the case.

By Rakesh Raman

As the controversy surrounding the Rafale deal refuses to slow down, the case has now reached India’s top investigating agency Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

Former BJP ministers Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie, and lawyer-activist Prashant Bhushan have filed a complaint with the CBI, urging the agency to register an FIR against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and former defence minister Manohar Parrikar.

The complaint alleges that Modi and Parrikar have committed a number of offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act, in the course of the April 2015 decision to purchase 36 Rafale aircraft from Dassault Aviation. The complaint was handed over to Alok Verma, director of the CBI, on Thursday.

It states that Modi – who is a public servant – misused his position as PM of India to give undue benefit to his close associate Anil Ambani who is the Chairman of Reliance ADA group of companies.

“With 46 documents as annexures, it makes an unanswerable case for prosecution of PM Modi, Ambani, and co-conspirators under the Prevention of Corruption Act,” Prashant Bhushan said.

Earlier, opposition political party Congress had submitted a detailed complaint about corruption in Rafale deal to India’s top anti-corruption organization Central Vigilance Commission (CVC).

According to Congress, a delegation of the party leaders met the Central Vigilance Commissioner K V Chowdary and presented proof of rampant corruption in Modi government. The party claimed that the irregularities in the Rafale deal have endangered national security and illegal benefit of ₹1,30,000 crore has gone to Modi’s crony friends (including Ambani).

As Congress is determined to make the Rafale corruption case a major issue in the upcoming elections, on Thursday it complained again to Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India – the top auditor of government accounts – urging it to investigate the Rafale case.

A delegation of the Congress leadership met the CAG to inform him about the latest developments in the case and submit a new complaint.

[ Rafale Scam: PM Modi Blamed with Hashtag #Mera_PM_Chor_Hai ]

Earlier, Congress had released a 20-point representation that it had sent to CAG. It has accused PM Modi of benefiting his crony friends in the unilateral purchase of 36 Rafale jets from French company Dassault Aviation.

Many Modi supporters believe that this is a political gimmick that the opposition parties are trying to play against PM Modi. A BJP leader and Modi’s friend Arun Jaitley has refuted the allegations, saying that it is an attempt to malign the government by spreading falsehood regarding the 2016 Inter-Governmental Agreement for the procurement of Rafale fighter aircraft.

While BJP leaders are defending Modi’s Rafale deal by giving loose political statements, they are not able to handle the specific queries related to the irregularities in the case.

Now Congress and other Modi opponents are demanding a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe in the Rafale case which is stated to be the biggest scam in the world.

As the Rafale scam is being considered as the biggest fraud by any government in India or abroad, it has become a political hot potato which has the sufficient heat to burn the ruling party BJP headed by PM Modi.

Earlier, Modi’s opponents Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie – who were ministers in the BJP government – and lawyer-activist Prashant Bhushan had released a detailed statement along with documents about the shady Rafale deal.

According to them, Modi has caused a loss of over Rs. 35,000 crore (about US$ 5 billion) to public funds to benefit his businessman friend Anil Ambani. “Modi has committed criminal misconduct under Prevention of Corruption Act,” Bhushan said.

Moreover, Congress president Rahul Gandhi had brought up the issue of corruption in Rafale deal when he was discussing the no-confidence motion against the Modi government in Parliament.

Attacking the Modi government for its massive corruption, the Congress president had said that Modi who promised to be a Chowkidar (guard of government assets) has become a Bhagidaar (partner in corruption).

He has alleged that PM Modi is personally involved in the deal in which kickbacks worth thousands of crores of rupees have been paid. Rahul Gandhi also had ridiculed Indian Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s remarks that her government will not disclose the details of the Rafale deal, which is stated to be worth Rs 130,000 crore (approximately USD $20 billion).

Although opposition parties are up in arms about the Rafale issue, it is largely believed that today there is no administrative or judicial institution in India that can go against the corruption in the Modi government.

You can click here to read the reactions of people about this case on social media site Facebook. You can also write your comments and share the article link with your friends.

By Rakesh Raman, who is a national award-winning journalist and social activist. He is the founder of a humanitarian organization RMN Foundation which is working in diverse areas to help the disadvantaged and distressed people in the society.

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Rakesh Raman