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There's a difference in dealing in defence and defence deals: Sitharaman

Congress is only shedding crocodile tears on the HAL not getting the offset contract as it did nothing to scale up the capacity of the state-run firm

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Nirmala Sitharaman
Nirmala Sitharaman

Hitting back at the on the fighter jet deal, Defence on Friday alleged that the party had stopped the deal when it was in power as it "didn't get the money" and ignored security.

Replying to a debate on the issue in Lok Sabha, Sitharaman alleged that the is only shedding crocodile tears on the not getting the offset contract as it did nothing to scale up the capacity of the state-run firm.

The BJP-led NDA government gave Rs one trillion worth of contracts to HAL, she said.

Taking on the Congress, the said, "You stopped the deal, forgetting was suffering. You didn't conclude the deal, because it didn't suit you. The deal didn't get you money."

"They did not intend to buy the till something else was done. There is something different between defence deal and deal in defence," she said, asserting that Prime government gave priority to security.

"You are misleading the country by saying the NDA government reduced 126 jets to 36. was supposed to buy 18 in fly-away condition, the NDA raised that to 36," she said.

The delivery of first Rafale will happen in 2019, while the last of 36 jets will be delivered in 2022, the minister said.

She said the IAF always advises government to buy two squadrons, which is 36 instead of 18, in case of emergency purchases, the Minister said.

First Published: Fri, January 04 2019. 15:15 IST
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