05 December, 2020

Rising Pitch Of Charges Over Rafale Deal Has Shades Of Bofors

Can the Rafale deal be as potent a scandal for the Modi government as Bofors had been for Rajiv Gandhi in 1987?

Youth Congress members agitate over the Rafale issue
Photograph by Suresh Pandey
Rising Pitch Of Charges Over Rafale Deal Has Shades Of Bofors
outlookindia.com
2018-09-28T12:58:59+05:30

Public perception plays a key role in determining a leader’s lon­­gevity in politics. However, unf­­­­oreseen events can scu­ttle well-laid-out plans, cutting short political careers and consigning leaders to the margins. If the fickle pattern of the Indian political landscape is anything to go by, politicians and obs­ervers will do well to keep a weather-eye on the tussle betw­een the ruling party and the challenger to the prime minister’s chair over the multi-billion dollar Rafale deal.

The moot question: Can the Rafale deal be as potent a scandal for the Modi government as Bofors had been for Rajiv Gandhi in 1987? His son Rahul, who was barely 17 then and now the Congress president, is determined. “The fun has just begun,” he says, claiming to prove that Modi is not a “chowkidar” (security guard), but a “chor” (thief). Defence minister Nirmala Seetharaman is alive to the challenge. “We know there is a perception battle. We will fight it,” she says.

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