Use common sense, PM tells Oppn on Rafale remarks

Last Updated 04 March 2019, 13:51 IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday hit out the opposition for questioning his statement that the presence of Rafale fighters would have given greater firepower to the IAF during the February 27 aerial engagement with Pakistan.

Modi said India would not sit quietly in the fight against terrorism and would do all to cure it from the root, which lies in Pakistan.

"I said if Rafale was acquired in time it would have made a difference (during the February 27 dogfight), but they say Modi is questioning our air force strike," he said, addressing a gathering here.

"Please use common sense. What I said was if we had Rafale at the time (of aerial dogfight), then none of our fighter jets would have gone down and none of theirs saved," he added.

Lashing out at statements from opposition party leaders who demanded proof of the February 26 air strike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camp in Pakistan's Balakot, Modi said his objective was to end terror while that of the opposition was to remove him.

"The root of terrorism disease is in the neighbouring country, should we not cure the disease from its root," he said.

"Even if mentors of those seeking to destroy India are outside, this country won't sit quietly," he said, addressing a gathering after inaugurating an annexe building of Guru Govind Singh hospital and various other development works here.

Modi also flagged off the Bandra-Jamnagar Humsafar Express and launched development projects, including the 51-km pipeline from Aaji-3 to Khijadia.

He said structural and long-term measures are required to overcome the challenges faced by the country, instead of poorly thought out short term ones.

Hospitals that have come up in the past few years in Gujarat will greatly benefit the poor, he said. The Ayushman Bharat scheme rolled out by the Union Government will ensure affordable and quality healthcare for the poor, he added.

Modi lauded water conservation measures adopted by the Gujarat government. The government has big plans to provide water to people by establishing big desalination plants, he said.

Slamming the Congress, Modi said the party's programme was to announce farm loan wavier every ten years and collect votes by fooling people.

"Our government will give direct financial assistance to farmers every year. When Rs 75,000 crore will go to the rural economy every year it will have a positive impact," Modi said.

(Published 04 March 2019, 09:15 IST)

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