• Sunday, 18 August 2019

Sibal charges current CAG Mehrishi with complicity in Rafale deal, warns bureaucrats of loyalty to PM Modi

New Delhi, Feb 10 : In a fresh blitzkrieg, Congress leader and former Union Minister Kapil Sibal on Sunday charged the present Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) Rajiv Mehrishi with complicity in Rafale fighter deal scam and also warned those bureaucrats who are 'showing loyalty' towards Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Sibal's attack on Mehrishi comes a day ahead when the Central government is scheduled to table the CAG report on Rafale deal in Parliament on Monday. CAG Rajiv Mehrishi was complicit in Rafale fighter deal and intends to save the Central government, he said at a press conference here, adding Mehrishi was India's Finance Secretary when the entire Rafale deal was finalised.

In what was viewed as a veiled threat to bureaucrats, Sibal said: The officials who are trying to show loyalty to Prime Minister Modi are being watched. Officials should know that elections come and go. Sometimes we are in opposition and sometimes we are the ruling party.

We will keep an eye on officials who are over enthusiastic and trying to show loyalty to Prime Minister Modi. They should remember that the Constitution is bigger than anything, he said.

Sharpening his attack on CAG Mehrishi, who was the Finance Secretary when Rafale deal was inked, Sibal said: CAG is going to completely save the Central government in its report. The whole deal was materialised in the supervision of Rajiv Mehrishi who was then Finance Secretary. When the negotiations started, the Ministry of Finance was a part of it.

Sibal further claimed that Mehrishi cannot act against himself as therein lies a conflict of interest in doing so. This is the corrupt deal and fair investigation should be done. But how can CAG investigate himself when he was the Finance Secretary. There is a clear conflict of interest, he claimed.

Sibal said the Central government knew beforehand what would be there in the CAG report, which, he said, is likely to be tabled in Parliament on Monday. We are doing this press conference to tell people how the government is fooling them, Sibal said.

Sibal also said institutions are being systemically destroyed. Those who speak against the Central government are slammed with the NSA, sedition, and are served notices by the ED.

They are actually destroying the fundamental institutions of this country, which will have a bearing on the generations to come, said Sibal, when asked to comment on the way Amol Palekar was heckled at an event recently at the National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) in Mumbai.

However, Union Minister Arun Jaitley pooh-poohed Sibal on his 'conflict of interest' comment, saying that Kapil Sibal even after being in the UPA government for ten years doesn't know that Finance Secretary is only a designation given to the senior most secretary in the Finance Ministry.

Defence Ministry files are dealt with by Secretary, Expenditure, and Secretary, Economic Affairs, has no role in expenditure files of the Defence ministry, Jaitley wrote on the micro-blogging platform, Twitter.

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Sibal charges current CAG Mehrishi with complicity in Rafale deal, warns bureaucrats of loyalty to PM Modi

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