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Rahul slams Modi over Rafale deal, says PM refuses to pay dues of HAL

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Upping the ante over HAL's reported cash crunch, on Tuesday alleged that paid Rs 20,000 crore to France's even though it has not delivered a single jet, but refuses to pay the dues of the Indian

Gandhi's attack comes a day after he accused the of weakening public sector undertaking (HAL) and destroying India's strategic capability to benefit industrialist

"The PM pays 20,000 Cr. to before a single is delivered but refuses to pay HAL 15,700 Cr. it is owed, forcing it to borrow 1,000 Cr to pay salaries," Gandhi tweeted.

"Meanwhile, (Raksha Mantri) spins lie after lie but cannot answer my questions," he said.

Gandhi also shared a video of his statement outside Parliament on Monday following Nirmala Sitharaman's remarks in Parliament rejecting "doubts" raised by the on her statement on HAL.

Speaking to reporters outside Parliament on Monday, Gandhi had alleged: "The strategy of the government is weaken HAL, do not give it money, destroy India's strategic capability and give the 'gift' to That is the plan and that is what we are trying to thwart."

The and the BJP-led NDA government have been involved in a war of words after a media report claimed that HAL, grappling with low finances, was forced to borrow Rs 1,000 crore to pay salaries to its employees, for the first time in years.

There was another report that claimed "not a single rupee of the said Rs 1 lakh crore has come to HAL, since not a single order, as claimed, has been signed till now".

The Congress has been targeting the government, alleging that it denied HAL an offset contract under the fighter jets deal with France, a charge the government has denied.

Ambani has also rejected all such allegations.

On the other hand, the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government has accused the Congress of not supporting HAL during its rule and asserted that the government is now strengthening the defence public sector undertaking.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, January 08 2019. 10:50 IST