New Delhi: In a scathing attack on Rahul Gandhi, finance minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday said the “failed politics” of the Congress president is “compelling him to make India’s sensitive defence requirements controversial”.

“UPA (government) delayed the Rafale purchase, much required for improving the combat ability of Indian Air force,” Jaitley said.

Terming the Rafale deal struck by the NDA government as “cheaper” than what the predecessor Congress had been negotiating for, the finance minister said the disrupters were now resorting to hair-splitting.

Jaitley said, “Falsehood is not a substitute for Rahul Gandhi’s failed politics”.

The Union minister and senior BJP leader has been taking on the Congress president over his allegations on the Rafale deal. Gandhi has been alleging that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had favoured the Reliance group headed by Anil Ambani by giving him offsets contract worth Rs 30,000 crore.

Earlier on Tuesday, news agency ANI had interviewed Dassault Aviation CEO Eric Trappier who totally denied any wrongdoing in the deal and debunked Gandhi’s claims about the possibility of any manipulation in selection of Reliance as an offsets partner.

“I don’t lie. The truth I declared before and the statements I made are true. I don’t have a reputation of lying. In my position as CEO, you don’t lie,” said Trappier when asked to respond to Gandhi’s charge that Dassault was covering up for possible cronyism in awarding the offset deal to the Ambani-led Reliance Group.

Trappier said that they had prior experience dealing with the Congress and that the comments made by the president of that party made him sad.