Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath Friday welcomed the Supreme Court’s decision dismissing petitions for a probe into the Rafale jet deal and sought an apology from the Congress.
At a hurriedly convened press conference at his residence in Uttar Pradesh capital Lucknow, the chief minister cited the verdict while demanding an unconditional apology from the Congress for spreading “false propaganda” against the BJP and the central government.
“The false propaganda of the Congress has come to the fore with the verdict of the apex court,” Yogi Adityanath remarked, and charged the party with defaming the central government and the BJP for political mileage.
“Rahul Gandhi should tell his source of information. With baseless allegations, he tried to play with the security of the country,” he said.
“The Congress should have acted responsibly on the issue of security,” Yogi Adityanath said.
“Everyone knows what the Congress did with Constitutional bodies when it was in power. On Ram Temple issue, the Congress threatened the justice, who was to give a judgement on the matter, with impeachment,” he said.
Earlier, senior BJP leader and Uttar Pradesh cabinet minister Shrikant Sharma said the Supreme Court judgment was a “slap” on the face of Congress chief Rahul Gandhi and his “lies” stood exposed.
“The SC verdict is a slap on Rahul Gandhi’s face. The lies of Rahul and his party stand exposed. This is also a lesson to a section of media houses, which did not go into the depth of the issue and became tools of the Congress president,” Mr Sharma said.
His remarks came hours after the apex court ruled that there was no occasion to doubt the decision-making process in the procurement of 36 Rafale jets from France by the Narendra Modi government.
Attacking the Congress president, Mr Sharma said, “The person allegedly involved in a Rs 5,000 crore fraud and out on Rs 50,000 bond is maligning the image of the PM’s post. The Congress spread lies and confusions to defame the government.”
Claiming that the government was serious in checking corruption, he added, “A former finance minister is about to go to jail, his son has already gone there. The accused in the Agusta Westland deal is in jail and Vijay Mallaya is in the queue. The commitment of the Narendra Modi government in checking corruption cannot be questioned.”
Commenting on the matter, BSP president Mayawati called for fundamental reforms in all defence-related procurement in order to address the doubts and the common perception over such issues.
The BSP chief said in a release that such a move would definitely give some respite to the central government, which is facing the heat on the matter.
In the wake of the Supreme Court order, Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said in Delhi that the top court vindicated the party’s stand that “corruption” in the deal cannot be decided by the court and challenged Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government for a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) probe.