congress troubled over rafale as vadra's aide wasn't made middleman: union minister

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Union Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal Monday said the Congress was "troubled" over the Rafale deal as the BJP government at the Centre had "kicked out" middleman Sanjay Bhandari, a close aide of Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra.

Meghwal alleged that the previous Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government at the Centre was more concerned about Bhandari than the Indian Air Force (IAF).

Despite the IAF's repeated requests for advanced fighter jets, the UPA regime kept dragging its feet on the important matter from 2006 till 2013.

"With complete information and responsibility, I am saying that Congress is troubled as the Rafale aircraft deal did not have middleman Sanjay Bhandari," he said in a press conference here.

"We kicked out the middleman and the deal was done between two countries," he added.

He claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government proposed to purchase the fighter aircraft at a much lower price than what was fixed by the previous UPA regime.

"Congress is discussing the prices of UPA-1 dispensation and not the price fixed by the UPA-2 during 2012-13. The price for a standard and fighter Rafale aircraft fixed by BJP government is 9 per cent and 25 per cent lower than the UPA deal," Meghwal said.

The Congress is lying and will be exposed once the Supreme Court delivers its judgment in the matter, he added.

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