In the ongoing debate on the No-Confidence motion in the Lok Sabha, the highlight of the day so far was the face-off between Congress President Rahul Gandhi and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
In his speech on the motion, Rahul Gandhi accused Sitharaman of lying regarding a secrecy clause in the Rafale deal with France. He said that the French President has personally told him that there is no secrecy clause in the deal and the ministry can publicly share all the details of the deal. This created a huge furore in the house which led to a 10-minute adjournment.
After the Congress President finished his speech, the Defense Minister presented an agreement signed by then Defence Minister A. K. Anthony containing the secrecy clause. Even the French government issued a statement saying that the Rafale deal was part of a secrecy clause. However, it did not clarify whether the price of the jets was part of it. To defend Gandhi, the opposition brought up a rule regarding state secrets and accused the minister of sharing state secrets in the house. She again refuted the charges.
This incident has proven one thing that the Congress works on the ‘heads I win, tails you lose’ strategy. The Congress President accused the Defence Minister of lying and if she had not defended herself, Congress would have gone out and used this everywhere. Now that people know that the pact of secrecy was in fact signed by UPA Government and it is Rahul Gandhi who was lying, the opposition is using the state secrets excuse. Whatever they say, their leader has been caught lying on the floor of the house. Now it is them who has to answer.