Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis Sunday said NCP president Sharad Pawar's remarks that former Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar quit his post at the Centre and returned to Goa as he did not agree with the Rafale fighter jet deal, were uncalled for.
Fadnavis also said that despite his ill-health and just about a week before his death, Parrikar had expressed a wish to hold at least two campaign rallies for Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.
Talking to reporters, the chief minister said, "Even Rahul Gandhi had earlier tried to make similar comments (against Parrikar), which was a very crass attempt. At that time Parrikar was alive and he had given a strong reply. But making similar comments after Parrikar's death, I think is uncalled for."
Parrikar had given straight answers earlier as well, he added.
"Parrikar was such a person that he had even expressed a wish to hold at least two campaign rallies during the 2019 general elections for PM Narendra Modi. He had expressed his wish eight days before his death," Fadnavis said.
Modi had announced the procurement of a batch of 36 Rafale jets after talks with the then French President Francois Hollande on April 10, 2015, in Paris. The final deal was sealed on September 23, 2016.