Former HAL union members meet Rahul; attack Modi

Former HAL union members meet Rahul; attack Modi

Congress President Rahul Gandhi

A group of former office-bearers of HAL employees union on Thursday met Congress President Rahul Gandhi to express their gratitude for raising the issue of the defence PSU not getting the contract to manufacture the Rafale jets on a transfer of technology basis.

Addressing a press conference here after meeting Congress President Rahul Gandhi over the issue, the employees accused Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman of “attempting to build a false narrative” that HAL is incapable of building the Rafale fighter jet.

"We appealed to Rahul Gandhi to ensure that HAL gets to build the Rafale aircraft on a transfer of technology basis,” Vijay Kumar, Master Technician in the Aero Engine Division, and a former office-bearer of the HAL union said.

S Renuka, ex-general secretary and former chief convenor of the All India Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd Trade Union Coordination Committee accused the Modi government of making no investments in the defence PSU.

Renuka claimed that the Centre had "siphoned off" money from HAL under the pretext of buyback of shares and dividends.

"There is a systematic conspiracy to bleed and shut down HAL by the present government. The present government has paid Rs 20,000 crore in advance for buying the Rafale to Dassault Aiavtion without delivery of a single aircraft. On the other hand, HAL has not been paid Rs 14,000 crore for aircraft, helicopters that have already been delivered,” he said.