India’s discourse has fallen to a new low. Where lies are being pushed with amazing remorselessness and power with media completely included in the whole crime. They know and the perpetrators of the lies know about what is happening but it is still being peddled to create a narrative just so that the current Government can be brought down.
The case that is the most symptomatic is the Rafale case. After the case made in a statement by the ex-Defense Minister Arun Jaitley in the parliament earlier, it was the turn of Nirmala Sitharaman to really rub it in with hard core facts.
Some of the facts that Sitharaman brought out were:
- The UPA government was going to do a (operative words) deal – no deal was ever finalized in 10 years time! – for only 18 aircrafts in “fly away” condition and 126 total aircrafts. Meanwhile, NDA government has DONE the deal (operative words) for 36 aircrafts in fly away condition and 126 total aircrafts.
- As to why only 36 aircrafts in fly away – that is because the highest number that be procured in an emergency purchase as per air force norms is two squadrons – which comes to 36 aircrafts. UPA, instead was going with only one squadron! So, all those so-called questions by Rahul Gandhi on why 36 are basically delusional at best.
- The total price in the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) that one can say the UPA government had in mind (remember NO deal was ever done) with respect to 126 Rafale aircrafts as In March 2012, the UPA government accepted a price of Rs 538 crores in 2012, which based on their own price escalation clause would have taken the price to be Rs 737 crores by March 2015! That compared to the Rs 670 crores for bare aircraft comes to 9% higher price by UPA government!
- Congress had accused the Modi government of “punishing” the Joint Secretary who had “objected to” the Rafale deal. Well, Ms Sitharaman disclosed that the said Joint Secretary had not just signed the final deal as part of a team but was the one who signedthe draft which went for CCS approval! Even if he had some questions, they were surely clarified before the draft was sent to the CCS.
- The negotiations went on from May 2015 to April 2016. Negotiation team from India was headed by Deputy Chief of Air Staff in the Indian Air force, and included several Joint secretaries. In all 74 Inter-government meetings were held before the finalization of the deal, including 48 internal INT and 26 INT meeting with French side. All seven members of INT signed the IGA. The INT report was final July 21, 2016.
- About Sovereign guarantee – Ms Sitharaman stated – no bank guarantee was ever provided for any military equipment sales with US government. No guarantees were ever provided by Russia or Soviet Union for the military equipment. However, in the Rafale case – the “Letter of Comfort” was signed by the President of France. So, in a world where India did not do any sovereign guarantees to create an Internal Government Agreement with a commitment from the French Government is as solid a guarantee as any one can get.
The Raksha Mantri Ms Sitharaman also went into the details of the Supreme Court verdict and why the court clearly specified that after going through the documentation provided by the government including the sealed envelope to satisfy its conscience and they find no reason to press this matter further. So it is not that the court did not go into the matter or does not want to go into the matter but is confident beyond a shadow of doubt that there is nothing “there”. There is no “there” there!
And, Ms Sitharaman also clearly said as to how Rahul Gandhi not just fooled the public but also lied to the Parliament openly about what French President Macron told him and challenged Rahul Gandhi to substantiate with a proof.
In this statement, the Minister of Defense, Ms Nirmala Sitharaman completely and factually demolished the lies and falsehoods of Congress and Rahul Gandhi.
But it would be completely naive to think that either Rahul Gandhi or Congress or their base will stop believing in their lies and falsehoods and they will stop coming up with Trump-esque outlandish nonsense. They will not. And, honestly, the idea is not to fight them beyond a reasonable point. There is nothing gained from that. What is needed is to use this and demolish them in every debate and loudly and clearly proclaim that Rahul Gandhi and Congress are a bunch of lying scoundrels. And yes, so are those who – quite like Trump followers – want to walk gleefully off the cliff! Even they thought Trump was harmless, as he had promised them – the laid off workers jobs when they were unemployed due to Obama’s policies – lots of “bigly jobs”. Well, today, Trump is ok with shutting down the government for 15 days already where the Federal workers are without a pay check and all because he wants a toy he desired – a $5 billion wall that will get the nation nothing! So, good luck with the jobs, suckers! Ditto for the farmers in MP and Rajasthan who have not gotten any relief on the loans.. Good luck with your stupidity and that extra bottle of liquor, you suckers! Some guys get killed, but these farmers were too eager to die early by voting for the very hand that had put them in that place first of all!
So, no point fighting the base with this body of facts. What needs to be done is to use this to hammer to the public that Rahul Gandhi and Congress are a bunch of lying scoundrels who have fooled enough people now.