Published On: Mon, Apr 15th, 2019

Rahul raises Rafale to wash away his father’s sins in Bofors case: Modi

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday defended invoking martyrs in his poll campaigns, saying there was nothing wrong in highlighting the sacrifices made by security personnel, adding some parties have made the deaths of farmers a political issue.

He said that “it is clear” that there is a design in raking up the Rafale issue in foreign media

“Thousands of soldiers have died in the past 40 years due to terrorism. Is it not an issue as to what should be done for them? If farmers die, it is an issue, then why not soldiers who die defending the counrty?” he said in an interview to DD News.

“We want to strengthen our forces. We have been fighting terrorism for the past 40 years. If we do not take this to public, what is the logic?”

Opposition parties have lodged complaints to the Election Commission over “politicisation” of the death of 40 CRPF personnel in Pulwama and subsequent retaliatory airstrike in Balakot in Pakistan.

Modi said the country cannot be run without nationalism. “Can any country run without nationalism? If we want to bring Olympic medals, the chances increase if the youth is filled with nationalism,” he said.

The Prime Minister said a section of “hyper-secular” people in the country were targeting his government.

Nothing had happened since Nehru’s time to resolve Jammu & Kashmir conflict, he said.

“We toed one line for 70 years. There has been no outcome. We prepared roadmaps in regards to Articles 370 and 35 A (of Constitution). Should not we take people into confidence and inform them about it?” he said.

Over the charges of National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah and Peoples Democratic Party leader Mehbooba Mufti that “Kashmir will be separated”, Modi said “They have always used such language. They have resorted to emotional blackmailing and emotional exploitation”.

Calling them outdated, Modi said panchayat elections in the state saw 70-75 per cent polling despite a boycot call by these leaders.

Slamming the Congress after the Supreme Court said the ‘chowkidar chor hai’ comment made by Rahul Gandhi in the context of Rafale issue had been wrongly attributed to it and said it was worrying that the grand old party had reached a level where it has to “depend on lies”.

“He raised wrong issues about Rafale to wash away his father’s sins in Bofors case by attributing it to nationalism,” said Modi.

Modi said Rahul Gandhi was raking up the Rafale issue in an attempt to “clear” the name of his late father Rajiv Gandhi in the Bofors scandal even when “the truth” about the Rafale is already in public.

He said that “it is clear” that there is a design in raking up the Rafale issue in foreign media.

“What I feel (about Rahul’s remark) is not an issue. I know it is a lie. So it does not worry me. The worry is that over 100-year-old party has reached such a level that it has to depend on lies. The Supreme Court had to take such a view. It is not a small thing,” the Prime Minister said.

He was responding when asked about the Rafale issue and how he feels when Rahul Gandhi says ‘chowkidar chor hai’, over which the Supreme Court made certain adverse observations.

The question was in the context of the Supreme Court, earlier in the day, observing that the ‘chowkidar chor hai’ comment made by Rahul Gandhi in the context of Rafale fighter jet issue had been wrongly attributed to it and demanded an explanation from the Congress President by April 22.

The Supreme Court’s directive came on a contempt plea filed by BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi against Gandhi, who had said over a week back that the top court had “accepted” that there was some form of corruption in the Rafale fighter jet deal and that “chowkidar chor hai”, a veiled reference to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

When a question was asked to Modi during the interview whether he felt that there was some “design” behind the international media publishing adverse reports regarding the Rafale deal, he said, “it is clear”.

Asked how the truth would “come out” on the Rafale issue, the Prime Minister shot back: “The truth is already out.” He said the CAG and Parliamentary Committee have already taken cognizance of the truth, but the media does not have the “courage” to say it.

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