New Delhi, Sept 19 (IANS): The government on Wednesday said a probe by a Joint Parliamentary Committee or Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) cannot be set up to go into the 36 Rafale fighter jet deal to satisfy the ego of a "ill-informed" Congress leaders.
"I don't think JPC or CAG inquiry is set up to satisfy the ego of an ill-informed leader who repeats lies with alarming regularity," Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told the media here.
The remarks came soon after a Congress delegation headed by senior leader AK Antony met the CAG and submitted a memorandum seeking an "urgent probe" into the purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets by the Modi government.
Prasad said what struck him more was the presence in the delegation of Antony, who was the Defence Minister for eight years during which nothing was done for modernisation and empowerment of Indian armed forces.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader said that Antony was the Minister when the offset rule was framed and who left the HAL in the lurch as far as joint operations were concerned.
"Antony has a lot to answer," Prasad said, adding that the Indian Air Force badly needed planes as old aircraft were leading to repeated accidents and pilot deaths. "Should the Congress at least not rise to the occasion for the sake of the country's safety and security?" he asked.
Continuing its campaign on Rafale deal, a Congress delegation today met the Comptroller and Auditor General seeking an "urgent probe" into the purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets by the Modi government.
"A delegation of Congress leadership has met the CAG and his senior colleagues. We have given a detailed memorandum along with the enclosures which very clearly and conclusively establish the irregularities," Congress leader Anand Sharma told the media here.
He said the enclosures included the "acts of commission and omission" by the government, specially what it alleged was the arbitrary decision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the Rafale purchase and cutting out the HAL from the deal.
"We hope that the matter will be urgently looked into by CAG which has the constitutional mandate. And a report will come to Parliament well in time in this particular scam as it has international ramification," he said.
Besides Sharma, the delegation included senior party leaders AK Antony, Ahmed Patel, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Mukul Vasnik, Jairam Ramesh, Randeep Surjewala, Rajeev Shukla and Vivek Tankha.