In what yet again exposes how the mainstream media outlets and online portal can stoop to any extent in order to malign the government, it has been reported that “The Ministry of Defence has no money to pay for the transportation of armed forces officers who have been transferred to various places of postings and also to those being attached on temporary duty for field exercises or for attending courses.”
Reacting to this, the defence ministry on Tuesday clarified that the fund crunch is not permanent and are resolved through routine re-appropriations. Additional money will be provided if the need arises. The Ministry further rubbished the claims of fund crunch.
A defence ministry spokesperson said, “At times, however, the allocated funds to specific head, which is based on predicted/ envisaged expenditure, may fall short of the actual expenditure. These shortfalls are only temporary and are resolved through routine re-appropriation. Additional funds will be provided if the necessity arises.”
In recent times, the Ministry of Defence and Indian Army has been frequent targets of fake news by the mainstream media.
Last year, The Indian Express published a misleading news item which alleged that Indian defence officials received kickbacks of worth Rs. 17.5 crore through Global Marketing SP Ltd in contract for spares for AN-32 Aircraft.
As soon as this news broke, fake news and rumors were spread like a wild fire that Indian officials had taken kickbacks for the procurement of spare parts of a plane. Some media houses and Congress President Rahul Gandhi also spread this fake news. The Congress President Rahul Gandhi tried to portray it as BJP’s ‘Bofors moment’. He was quick to grab the opportunity and took to twitter to attack the Modi government. He tweeted, “Ministry Of Defence (MODI) officials, accused of making millions of $’s in kickbacks via Dubai by Ukrainian Govt. in the AN32 deal. Modi ji, as our self-proclaimed chokidar, I urge you to take immediate action against your corrupt MODI officials (sic).”
However, the truth was that it was the Ukrainian government which had asked the Indian government for help in a probe against its own government officials. Their attempt to target the BJP was thwarted by Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman. The Ministry of Defence had clarified that it has never dealt with the company in question, putting to rest all the rumors. It had also clarified that it was asked for help by Ukraine to probe their own officials. She tweeted, “A misleading news item has appeared alleging kickbacks to Indian govt officials through Global Marketing SP Ltd in a contract for spares for AN-32 Aircraft. It’s informed that MoD or IAF has neither interacted nor signed any agreement with them nor any such agreements witnessed: MoD”
'A misleading news item appeared in @IndianExpress alleging kickbacks to GoI officials through Global Marketing SP Ltd in contract for spares for AN-32 Aircraft. MoD or @IAF_MCC has not signed any agreement w/ above mentioned firm'
Full Press Release-https://t.co/iUU2lRXcqV… https://t.co/xpXU1FII0A
— Nirmala Sitharaman (@nsitharaman) May 31, 2018
A misleading news item has appeared alleging kickbacks to Indian govt officials through Global Marketing SP Ltd in contract for spares for AN-32 Aircraft. It's informed that MoD or IAF has neither interacted or signed any agreement with them nor any such agreements witnessed: MoD
— ANI (@ANI) May 31, 2018
Earlier also Rahul Gandhi tweeted a made up story which also appeared in the Economic Times, a blatant lie claiming that the soldiers will now have to buy their uniforms with their own money. Rahul Gandhi tweeted:
MAKE (empty slogans and useless acronyms) IN INDIA….meanwhile, make our soldiers buy their own clothes & shoes. https://t.co/UaWqsIhnQx
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) June 5, 2018
Claims of Rahul Gandhi and his cabal were far from the truth. The truth is that as per 7th pay commission dress allowances to soldiers are up to Rs 20,000.
Defence veterans also refuted this fake news.
It's just an alarming headline.
A cut-down of useless & mundane activities of the ordnance factories, such as making clothes, has been projected as "Army personnel to buy own uniforms" etc.
These unproductive activities eat up resources & clog the system.https://t.co/VZn82mLhQJ
— Navdeep Singh (@SinghNavdeep) June 5, 2018
It is very clear that fake news about the fund crunch was spread with the intentions of defaming the Indian Army and to denigrate the Ministry of Defence led by Nirmala Sitharaman. However, the lies have a very short half-life and as is evident, these attempts failed miserably.