Cong accuses Modi of doublespeak on defence deals

Cong accuses Modi of doublespeak on defence deals

Abhishek Manu Singhvi. PTI FILE PHOTO

The Congress on Wednesday accused the Modi government of indulging in doublespeak in rejecting grant of offset contract to a private company for manufacturing AK-103 rifles citing the inter-government nature of the deal.

Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi wondered why the Modi government did not apply the same standard for the Rafale deal, which too was reached as part of a government-to-government negotiation.

"Why are different yardsticks used for the Rafale and AK-103 contracts," Singhvi asked quoting reports in a section of the media that the defence minister had shot down a proposal of Kalashnikov concern to rope in a private company as the offset partner in the AK-103 rifle deal.

"Why did the Modi government not apply the same principle in the Rafale Scam? Why did Modi Govt not advise Dassault Aviation to negotiate further with government-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited," the Congress spokesman asked.

"The government is acting selectively. It is changing the goalpost as the match is in progress. It is converting and inventing rules as the game is on," Singhvi said referring to the AK-103 deal.

The Congress has stepped up its heat on the Modi government on the Rafale deal in an attempt to pin charges of "personal corruption" on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

According to the Congress, Modi personally changed the Rafale deal finalised by the UPA government to benefit his "industrialist friend Anil Ambani".