New Delhi: A fresh series of attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi by the Congress was nipped in the bud on Friday. The attack was based on a ‘biased’ news report published by The Hindu newspaper, which accused the Prime Minister’s Office of interfering in the negotiation with France on Rafale deal.

Documents accessed by MyNation, show how The Hindu report mentioned only the partial document of the ministry of defence (MoD). The news report said that in a letter sent by the then defence secretary G Mohan Kumar, dated December 1, 2015, to the then defence minister Manohar Parrikar, the former expressed concerns about the PMO's interference with negotiations in the Rafale deal.

Also read: Goa CM Manohar Parrikar exposes Rahul Gandhi's Rafale claim with scathing letter

Here are three ways Rahul Gandhi is wrong 

1. The truth is that the same letter had a hand-written remark from Parrikar which exposed the half-truth shown by the paper.  

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“It appears that PMO and French President office are monitoring the progress of the issue which was an outcome of the summit meeting. Para 5 appears to be an overreaction. Defence Secretary (G Mohan Kumar) may resolve the matter in consultation with Principal Secretary to PM,” Parrikar said in his response to Kumar on 11 January 2016.

2. Moreover, documents accessed by MyNation shows that the MoD never objected on PMO interference in pricing matter. The only point expressed was on the PMO having talks with the French government regarding sovereign guarantee and general terms and conditions.

Even, defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman rubbished The Hindu’s report and called it “flogging a dead horse”. She also accused the Opposition of playing into the hands of multinational companies and vested interests.

Also read: Nirmala Sitharaman: Congress made Rafale controversial ‘because someone didn’t receive something somewhere’

3. While, the defence ministry’s documents were enough to pour cold water over Gandhi’s attempt to bring the Rafale issue back in debate, the then French Prime Minister Manuel Valls, in 2016, also wrote a letter to PM Modi in which he said that they will completely back the obligations made by their firms in the contract.

“I hereby confirm that the government of the French republic is fully committed to doing whatever is necessary to make sure that Dassault Aviation and MBDA of France, each in their own respect, do their utmost to fully respect their obligations in accordance with aforesaid inter-governmental agreement and annexed supporting protocols,” said the letter in possession of MyNation.

In the letter, Valls also mentioned, “the contacts between our two governments defined in particular the terms of the inter-governmental agreement which determines to our mutual satisfaction the framework and modalities of our respective commitments.”

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