NCP MP Supriya Sule demands JPC probe into Rafale deal after Sharad Pawar's clean chit to PM Narendra Modi

NCP's Katihar MP Tariq Anwar today resigned from the party over the issue. 

NCP MP Supriya Sule demands JPC probe into Rafale deal after Sharad Pawar's clean chit to PM Narendra Modi

MUMBAI: Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MP Supriya Sule on Friday demanded a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe into the controversial Rafale fighter jet deal between India and France, a day after her father and party chief Sharad Pawar backed the Prime Minister, saying ''no one doubted his intentions''. 

In a series of tweets, Sule also claimed that it was "disappointing" that the issues raised by her father Sharad Pawar regarding the Rafale fighter jet deal were ignored.

Sule questioned if the Modi government is so confident of facts then why is it shying away from a JPC probe into the deal?.



Sule's demand for a JPC probe came shortly after NCP's Katihar MP Tariq Anwar resigned from the party and from the Lok Sabha over Sharad Pawar's apparent ''clean chit'' to PM Narendra Modi over the Rafale deal.

"Our (NCP) national president Sharad Pawar indirectly gave a clean chit to PM, in a statement on Rafale deal. PM is completely involved in the deal. The opposition is demanding constitution of JPC for a probe in it. I'm upset with his statement," Tariq Anwar said after resigning.

NCP Spokesperson and Rajya Sabha MP Majeed Memon and party leader Nawab Malik later confirmed Anwar`s resignation. 

At a time when the entire Opposition led by the Congress party has been mounting attacks on the BJP government at the Centre over the deal to purchase 36 Rafale fighter jets from France, NCP chief Sharad Pawar had backed the Prime Minister, saying ''no one doubts his intentions.''

''People do not have doubts over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's intentions,'' the veteran NCP leader had said.

Pawar said this in an interview with a Marathi news channel during which the former Defence Minister also suggested that the Opposition's demand for sharing technical details relating to the fighter jet "made no sense". 

The NCP chief, however, said that there was no harm for the government to reveal the cost of the Rafale fighter aircraft.

"I don't think people have doubts about Modi's intentions personally," Pawar said.

Pawar, however, added that the way Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman presented the government's side on the controversial deal led to confusion in the minds of people.

"Now, (Union Finance Minister) Arun Jaitley can be seen articulating (government's stand) on the issue (instead of Sitharaman)," he remarked. 

The Congress has launched a major offensive against the Narendra Modi-led BJP government over the Rafale jet deal, alleging corruption and violation of rules by the NDA government. 

It has accused the government of causing loss to the public exchequer and endangering national security by bypassing state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in favour of some businessman "friends" for offset contract.

The Congress party has also termed the Rafale fighter jet deal as the country's biggest defence scam of the country.

(With Agency inputs)