Modi: Congress calling Supreme Court a liar'

Modi said the truth will eventually triumph over the tendency to speak lies .

Rae Bareli/Allahabad: In his first public outburst against the Congress after the Rafale deal verdict, Prime Minister Narendra Modi alleged on Sunday that the Opposition party was trying to project Supreme Court as a “liar” and was letting down the defence forces.

Addressing a rally at Rae Bareli, Mr Modi termed earlier defence deals by the Congress government as “tainted” and dubbed Italian businessman Ottavio Quattrochi and alleged middleman Christian Michel as “uncles” (of the Congress). He said the Opposition party was “aligning” with forces that do not want to see India’s defence forces becoming strong. Citing a couplet from the Ramcharit Manas, Mr Modi said there were some who only accept “lies” and share these with other people. “For these very people, the defence ministry, the defence minister, officers of the Indian Air Force, the government of France, are all liars ... Now the Supreme Court also appears to be a liar to them,” Mr Modi said in his 50-minute address, of which nearly 30 minutes were dedicated to the Rafale deal.

In his address, Mr Modi said the truth will eventually triumph over the tendency to “speak lies”. He said: “There are two facets before the country... One is of the government which is making every possible effort to augment the strength of the defence forces, and the second is of those forces which want to weaken the country at every cost.” This was Mr Modi’s first public meeting in Sonia Gandhi’s turf after the BJP lost the three heartland states of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh to the Congress and its allies.

Claiming that previous defence deals were tainted, he alleged that the history of the Congress in terms of such deals “belongs to (Italian businessman Ottavio) Quattrochi mama”. Referring to the AgustaWestland VIP helicopter case, he said: “We have brought one uncle Christian Michel to India a few days back.” The 54-year-old British national is one of three alleged middlemen being investigated by the CBI over charges of organising bribes for Indian politicians and bureaucrats to push for the '3,600-crore AgustaWestland helicopter deal.

“I want to know from the Congress why it is agitated and speaking lies repeatedly. Is it because there is no Quattrochi mama or Christian Michel in the defence deals done by the BJP government?” he asked.

Noting that after the Kargil conflict, there was a need for modern aircraft, the Prime Minister said: “The Congress ruled the country for 10 years, but it did not allow the Air Force to get strengthened. Why? And under whose pressure?” Accusing the Congress of failing to provide bulletproof jackets to jawans, Mr Modi said: “After we came to power, we purchased 50,000 bulletproof jackets in 2016”, and added that this year an order to purchase 1.86 lakh jackets had been placed with a domestic firm.

Mr Modi also paid tribute to martyrs of the 1971 India-Pakistan war and said on this day in 1971, the brave soldiers of India had defeated the forces that had become synonymous with terror, atrocity and anarchy.

At Allahabad, ahead of the Kumbh Mela that will begin on January 15, the PM asked people to “beware of the parties pretending to stand for democracy”.

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