The Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday lashed out at Congress leader Kapil Sibal for defending businessman Anil Ambani in court, even as the Opposition party attacks him in public over the offset contract granted to him in the Rafale deal. Sibal on Tuesday appeared as an advocate for Reliance Communications, in a hearing in the Supreme Court on a contempt plea filed by Ericsson India, which has alleged that his firm owes dues worth Rs 550 crore.
BJP spokesperson GVL Narasimha Rao claimed that Congress President Rahul Gandhi attacked the Centre on the Rafale deal because Ambani could not secure any benefit under the National Democratic Alliance government, whereas it had won favours when the United Progressive Alliance was in power, PTI reported. He accused Gandhi and the Congress of “fake propaganda”.
“The entire Congress leadership has very close proximity with the company that they allege had benefited in the Rafale deal,” Rao said. “Now they show some fake distance from that company but that stands exposed with Kapil Sibal openly backing that company in many cases.”
Earlier on Tuesday, Gandhi had claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi committed “treason” by acting as a middleman for Ambani in the Rafale deal. Quoting from an email written by an Airbus executive to a French official, Gandhi claimed that Ambani was aware of the Memorandum of Understanding before India and France signed it in 2015.
However, Reliance Defence, the firm which secured the offset contract for the deal, refuted the allegations. Reliance Defence said the “proposed Memorandum of Understanding” cited by Gandhi refers to its collaboration on the Airbus Helicopter deal and not the Rafale jet deal.