The government and the Congress on Wednesday traded charges over Rafale fighter jets deal in the Lok Sabha, as the House debated the issue. While Congress president Rahul Gandhi made an attempt to corner the government with a controversial audio clip, wherein Goa Health Minister Vishwajit Pratapsingh Rane claimed that Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar has 'all the files related to Rafale deal in his bedroom', Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley launched a scathing attack on the Congress and the Gandhi family, accusing them of compromising national security. The war of words led to an uproar in the House.
Here are the highlights of the Rafale debate in Lok Sabha:
# LS adjourned for the day after Speaker suspends several protesting members for five sittings.
# The government is misleading every institution, and the government is misusing the Supreme Court as well, alleged Telugu Desam Party (TDP) MP Jayadev Galla.
# If the government is honest, why is the government not agreeing on JPC, asks Shiv Sena.
# Qatar bought these aircraft at a much cheaper price, propriety and procedure questions still exist, and we have a right to ask questions, says BJD.
# This deal deserves transperancy and people of India should know what went behind the deal, says BJD.
# BJD MP Kalikesh Singh Deo says Parliament has all the right to question government on Rafale deal. He says, "No one is doubting the need of the aircraft, but we cannot have a deal marred under questions."
# Why is the Defence Minister not speaking on Rafale issue, asks Trinamool Congress.
# Why a newcomer and a private company was given offset contract, asks Trinamool Congress.
# If there was so much hurry to get Rafale, why did Prime Minister Modi take one year and four months to finalises a deal of which the previous government had completed the basic procedures, says TMC leader Saugata Roy.
# Prime Minister does not have the courage to face the opposition, he is hiding behind Arun Jaitley. Modi is like Meghnad, says TMC leader Saugata Roy.
# Prof Saugata Roy of the Trinamool Congress speaks on Rafale issue, says the NDA government, which is in majority, had to borrow a member from Rajya Sabha (Arun Jaitley) to speak on the issue. And that too when that member of Rajya Sabha is not even the Defence Minister.
# There can be no JPC at all on Rafale issue.When Supreme Court has expressed satisfaction over the issue, there is no need for a JPC, says Jaitley.
# HAL informed the previous UPA government that they needed 2.7 times more manpower than Dassault Aviation to manufacture Rafale jet, it would not have been fair for the defence forces to wait for that long, says Jaitley.
# I feel sad that the Congress president does not know what an offset partner is, says Jaitley.
# The Supreme Court also received details about the pricing of aircraft and they felt that there was no need for them to interfere in the issue. The details satisfied the conscience of the court, but not the electoral needs of the Congress party, says Jaitley.
# The cost of weaponised aircraft was 20% less than that agreed under the UPA government, that of the basic aircraft was 9% lesser, says Jaitley.
# Even Supreme Court has said that it is satisfied with the procurement process of Rafale. The difference between the pricing is because of the price of just the basic aircraft and that of weaponised aircraft, says Arun Jaitley.
# Some people have a natural dislike for truth. The country is disappointed with the points raised by Rahul. He does not even have the courage to authenticate the tape he wants to play here, said Arun Jaitley.
# Finance Minister Jaitley says that Congress was once headed by great personalities but is currently under someone who 'does not have the basic understanding of what a combat aircraft is.' "Congress only understands money, has no understanding of national security issues," he added.