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Congress plans month-long agitation, marches against Rafale deal

New Delhi: Undeterred by legal notices served on its leaders, the Congress has decided to intensify its campaign against the Rafale fighter aircraft deal which, the party claimed, was altered to benefit Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s industrialist “friend” and “promote crony capitalism”.
The Congress has lined up a series of events to take the issue to the people and “expose” the Narendra Modi government ahead of next year’s parliamentary election.
The main opposition party will stage agitations and take out marches at district and state levels over the alleged scam worth thousands of crores of rupees.
Besides, senior party leaders will hold press conferences across the country till September 6 to “reveal the truths” about the revised deal which, it claimed, was inked at a much higher price than the one the previous UPA dispensation had negotiated.
The district-level agitations will be held from September 7 to 15, while the state-level agitations will be organised from September 16 to 30.
The Congress has also set up a separate control room at the party headquarters to monitor district-level agitations.
“Please ensure that a massive state-level agitation and a march to the Governor’s House for submission of memorandum to the Governor,” party general secretary Ashok Gehlot has said in a letter to the party’s state unit chiefs.
According to party sources, the Congress will make the alleged Rafale scam a “poll issue” and target the Modi government over its claim of corruption-free governance.
The Congress has accused the Modi government of not disclosing the price of the aircraft and alleged that the price was three times higher than that negotiated during the UPA government with France’s Dassault Aviation, the manufacturer of the aircraft.
The Congress has also accused PM Modi of “personally benefitting” from the deal, and alleged that it was the reason behind his continued silence on the issue.
“The Rafale scam is a sordid saga of squandering our national interests and promoting crony capitalism by the Modi government,” the party said.