Sitharaman no scandal in the Rafale deal

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today said, Indian forces will respond to any unprovoked attack to keep the borders safe.

Mrs Sitharaman was addressing a press conference in New Delhi about the achievements of her Ministry in the last four years. She said, it is the government’s duty to guard the border and India will not stop if it is provoked.

The Minister said, terror and talks cannot go hand in hand with Pakistan, adding that this is the government’s stand which has already been told by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

Replying to a question, Mrs Sitharaman said, there is no scandal in the Rafale deal and assured the nation that not a single paisa corruption was done. She also said, there is no shortage of Defence ammunition today. The Minister added that the Armed Forces faced funds shortage under the UPA government. However, there are no shortages now.

Union Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, “There is no shortage of defence ammunition today. Allegations of scam in the Rafael deal are baseless,” Sitharaman stated while addressing a press conference on the occasion of the completion of four years of the National Democratic Alliance government.

But on the other hand, Congress President Rahul Gandhi has long been criticising the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led NDA government, alleging that the government has signed an overpriced deal.

Gandhi had also said the United Progressive Alliance government had cracked a better deal, while the incumbent government’s deal will be causing a loss of over Rs 40,000 crore. In February, Gandhi posed eight questions to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the deal and alleged that the Prime Minister personally went to Paris and changed the deal. — ANI

Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman on the Ramzan ceasefire with Pakistan.  Addressing a press conference, Sitharaman says terror and talks cannot go together. She said the army was consulted before the ceasefire was announced. The defence minister said 50 terrorists were killed in 19 weeks before Ramzan, while seven terrorists were killed in two weeks during Ramzan. “We will keep our borders safe,” the minister said.

On the Ramzan ceasefire, the minister added, “When it is an unprovoked attack the Army was given the right to retaliate. We honour the ceasefire but of course, a margin was given to us when there is an unprovoked attack. The MoD’s role isn’t to asses whether it was successful or not. It’s our business to guard the border and we won’t stop if we’re provoked. We shall be alert that no unprovoked attack goes without us responding. It’s our duty to keep India safe.”

She said the defence ministry spending was its highest last year for over a decade. She said there was no real cash crunch in defence. She said when the government came in there was an ammunition shortage, but not any more.

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