New Delhi: Even as the Supreme Court rejected a probe into the Rafale deal, saying there was no “substantial evidence of any commercial favouritism” and the Government demanded Rahul Gandhi’s apology, the Congress on Friday said the court ruling is “not a setback at all.”
NDTV quoted top Congress sources as saying that the party would keep up its demand for a Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) to investigate the deal as the Supreme Court “had not looked at all the points”. Only a parliamentary probe will be able to look into these details, the sources said.
The Rs. 59,000-crore deal for the purchase of 36 Rafale jets from French firm Dassault headlined Congress President Rahul Gandhi’s campaign during the recent state elections, in which the party won three big BJP-ruled states – Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh.
The Congress President alleges huge corruption by the government to favour industrialist Anil Ambani, who, he maintains, scored an offset deal with Dassault despite the inexperience of his defence company. The Congress alleges that the centre scrapped a deal for 126 Rafale jets negotiated by the previous UPA government and entered an expensive new contract just to help Anil Ambani.
The top court said there was “no substantial evidence of commercial favouritism to any private entity”, demolishing the Congress and opposition arguments.
A three-judge bench led by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi also said “perception by individuals cannot be the subject of roving inquiry” by the court.