Corruption in Rafale Deal: Who Will Catch the Culprits in Modi Govt?

Narendra Modi (file photo). Courtesy: PIB
Narendra Modi (file photo). Courtesy: PIB

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.

By Rakesh Raman

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 Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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 on Wednesday 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.

A large number of Indians are using social media platforms such as Facebook to offer their comments and share the news about the corruption in the Modi government.

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People suggest that a court case must be filed against Modi and other accused in order to know the truth. However, lawyer Prashant Bhushan stated Wednesday that the courts and judges cannot dare to go against Modi. He counted a number of examples including Sahara-Birla payoff allegations against Modi where the Supreme Court refused to take action.

“Sahara diaries and the allegations against Modi are very serious and must be investigated,” counting a number of corruption cases in the Modi government, CPI (M) leader Sitaram Yechury had asked for a thorough probe. But it did not happen.

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“The unfolding Rafale scam makes clear that the wires lead straight to Modi who took all the decisions. His silence on this and the ‘secrecy’ establish complicity,” Yechury tweeted today.

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.

Arun Shourie suggested Wednesday that Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India – the top auditor of government accounts – should investigate the Rafale case and release its findings publicly.

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.

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“The unsubstantiated allegations against the Government constitute nothing but reprocessed lies by forces increasingly desperate to prove their relevance,” Jaitley wrote in a Facebook post.

Earlier, 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).

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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