Supreme Court decree on Rafale deal a huge relief to Narendra Modi govt
Supreme Court decree on Rafale deal a huge relief to Narendra Modi govt

The apex court judgment on the Rafale deal and its subsequent clean chit to the Narendra Modi government clearing it of any misconduct in the deal comes as a huge relief to the Modi government. It should naturally have silenced the Opposition which charged the government with favouritism, but it did not.

The Congress feels that only a Joint Parliamentary Committee would bring the truth out. It is clear to all that the only truth in the controversy is that the Opposition is trying to attempt to take political mileage. That is all.

From the beginning it has been pointed out that the state-of-the-art Rafale cost whatever it costs and not what the Congress or Prashant Bhushan claims it to be. But the attitude of the two that if it the judgment is X, it is good and if it is Y, it is bad is perceptible.

Only the very blind can see something wrong in the deal. Rafale has been the preferred aircraft of the Indian Air Force wilting under the pressure of ageing aircraft squadrons and depleting numbers. Indian governments have always been dilly dallying when it comes to procurement.

A K Antony of the UPA regime is a classic example of this indecisiveness. He just slept on the procurement plans. It was only after the advent of the Modi government that the defence forces - all the three wings, the Army, the Air Force and the Navy - became active in listing out their requirements and seeking modernisation of the forces.

Modern day warfare is far too advanced and India cannot afford to lag behind. More so, due to political reasons. There was this lurking fear that the apex court might order an inquiry into the deal which would stall the entire process. It would also have affected the other procurements in the pipeline with the Opposition pitching for the same. One could oppose the government and the party in place over anything.

However, national interest must be kept above all. Alas, the Congress and some NGOs inimical to the present government and leaders like Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie, discarded and dumped by the people long ago, will not understand the same.

The Congress would be mistaken if it thinks that it can throw mud on Modi over the Rafale deal in its campaign in the general elections. Its electoral margins in the recently held Assembly elections in the Hindi heartland are neither proof of its resurgence nor an impact of the Rafale campaign.

What could have mattered was, perhaps, the farm distress. In Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan, it was caste groupings that tilted the results. In Madhya Pradesh the margins were so narrow in several seats that it could have gone the other way too.

Secondly, the next elections will be more presidential like and Rahul cannot fight Modi with Rafale agenda. The Congress needs to do a lot of study and be really prepared to make sacrifices in forming pre-poll alliances. Pre-poll failures will not be enough to cover up losses in post-poll alliances. 

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