The Maharashtra unit of the Congress will organise a protest march against the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led central government over the alleged corruption in the Rafale fighter jet deal, in Mumbai on July 30.“Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman have lied to the country by keeping it in the dark over the Rafale deal. The agreement has no clause requiring the government to keep the price of the deal hidden, but only the technicalities of the fighter jets. The government is trying to hide a scam worth ₹41,000 crore,” said Ashok Chavan, president of the Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee.Mr. Chavan said the agreement signed during the United Progressive Alliance regime in December 2012 stated that the cost of one Rafale jet is ₹526 crore and the total cost of 36 jets works out to ₹18,940 crore. The cost of one jet under the Modi government, though, is ₹1670.70 crore, which is almost 300% higher than the earlier deal. “The current deal does not share the technology with India, whereas the deal made by the Congress emphasised that,” he said.Mumbai Congress Unit Chief Sanjay Nirupam said, “What forced the BJP government to allot this contract to Reliance Defence, a newly-formed company with no experience whatsoever in making defence planes, over a firm like Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd, which has been in this industry for years? According to the law, the Standing Committee on Defence and the Comptroller and Auditor General should be informed about any such deal being signed by the government. The fact that Mr. Modi and the Defence Minister have decided to keep the price under wraps reeks of corruption.”
The interest and rights of every Indian citizen will be protected and those who have illegally entered the country will be dealt with as per provisions of the law, Union Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani said here on Tuesday.Ms. Irani, who was in the city to highlight the achievements of 100 days work of the Narendra Modi-led government, was responding to questions on the implementation of National Register of Citizens (NRC) in West Bengal.“The BJP is dedicated to protecting the rights of citizens of India, the BJP has articulated its stand against illegal infiltration on many platforms,” the Union Minister said, adding that Home Minister Amit Shah has said on several occasions that rights of every citizen will be protected.Ms. Irani’s comments comes in the backdrop of a resolution passed by the West Bengal Assembly against NRC in Assam.