AgustaWestland scam: In Rajasthan, Narendra Modi says Congress never thought chaiwala will take naamdaars to court

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday launched a scathing attack on Congress over the AgustaWestland chopper deal case, saying that the government has brought back the rajdaar (confidante) Christian Michel from Dubai, and it remains to be seen the deep secrets he (Michel) will unveil.

Modi, who was addressing a rally in Rajasthan's Sumerpur on the last day of campaigning in the poll-bound state, said, "The VVIP scam took place when UPA was in power. When this (NDA) government came to power, it started the investigation in the case."

Michel, who was extradited to India on Tuesday, is accused of paying bribes to officials and politicians to swing the contract in the favour of AgustaWestland, the British arm of Italian firm Finmeccanica. Several top leaders in Congress are named in the scam.

The timing of Michel's extradition has been questioned by the Opposition parties including Congress. According to reports, Michel's extradition and the subsequent arrest has given the BJP a new point to hit back at the Congress, much like Congress has been taking on the BJP over the Rafale deal. By implicating the Gandhi family in the scam, the prime minister is hampering the Congress' electoral prospects in the state.

However, Modi termed the Congress's criticism as an acceptance of their defeat ahead of the Assembly polls. "They are trying to find any possible logic so the responsibility of defeat does not lie on the naamdar's (Rahul Gandhi) shoulders," he said.

Modi termed the four generation of Congress leaders as termite and that they needed to be "erased completely". He also accused the Congress of creating divisions in society over the last 70 years and claimed that the party cannot work in the interest of the common man. "The one who destroyed the country, can it bring you prosperity?" he asked

Narendra Modi addressing a rally in Rajasthan's Sumerpur. Twitter/@BJP4India

Narendra Modi addressing a rally in Rajasthan's Sumerpur. Twitter/@BJP4India

Speaking about the Supreme Court's decision to allow the Income Tax Department to continue re-assessing the taxes filed by the Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, UPA president Sonia Gandhi and party leader Oscar Fernandes for the 2011-12 financial year, Modi said: "Ab dekhta hoon kaise bach ke nikalte ho (Now I will see how you will escape)."

Continuing his statement on the apex court's ruling, he said: "The country had never thought that a chaiwala will take the naamdaars, who ruled the nation for four generations, to a court."

Responding to the Congress' consistent demands that the BJP give an account of the work they have done in India, the prime minister said: "Give an account of these 70 years first, and then ask for an account of the last 4.5 years from us."

He also launched a personal attack on Rahul, saying that he does not even know the names of his own party leaders. "He did not even know the name of a very popular farmer and Jat leader in Congress, the late Kumbharam. He called him 'Kumbhakaran'," Modi said. "You can imagine what such people will do when in power," he added.

BJP president Amit Shah is also touring the state, addressing rallies in Jaipur and Ajmer. Wednesday is the last day of campaigning for the state polls. Rajasthan Vidhan Sabha elections are slated to be held on 7 December, and the results will be declared on 11 December.

Click here to read more about the key candidates for the state polls.

Click here to read more about the key constituencies in Rajasthan ahead of the polls.

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Updated Date: Dec 05, 2018 14:43:02 IST

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