Before the 2019 general election, Congress tried tooth and nail to dig a scam out of the Rafale deal. The party deployed its loonies in the left-liberal media establishment to create a story out of thin air and tarnish the image of the Modi government. The party wanted to create a Rafale scam just like the Bofors scam, which cost Rajiv Gandhi the 1989 general election. However, all the efforts of the party failed because there was no scam on part of the Modi government, and BJP got reelected with an even bigger majority.
But, the desperate attempts of Congress to generate buzz around the story, now another scam of the UPA government has been exposed, that too related to Rafale in which the party was trying to implicate the Modi government.
As per a report by Mediapart, a French online portal, crores of rupees were paid to a middleman named Sushen Mohan Gupta, and most of these transactions were done between 2004 to 2013. “According to an accounts spreadsheet belonging to Sushen Gupta, an entity called simply ‘D’, which is a code he regularly used to designate Dassault, paid €14.6 million to Interdev in Singapore over the period 2004-2013,” the report said.
Sushen Mohan Gupta was a very influential middleman during the UPA era. In 2019, he was arrested in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal case, another defence deal scam worth crores in during the UPA government.
The Congress party tried to take on the Modi government on the Rafale deal but the equations have now turned the exact opposite because the Congress-led UPA government is now under question for 14.6 million Euros of kickbacks paid for the deal.
Initially, Gupta was being paid directly by Thales, a French multinational company that designs and builds electrical systems, through shell companies. According to another account’s spreadsheet belonging to Gupta, which only covers the years between 2004 to 2008, Thales paid €2.4 million to another shell company. Later, when they came under the radar, thousands of crores of rupees were paid to Gupta through inflated bills for software consulting between 2008 to 2013.
In the AugustaWestland VVIP chopper deal, Gupta had made millions of Euros already, and simultaneously he was also making money in the Rafale deal, too. According to investigation agencies, in the AugustaWestland VVIP chopper deal, “More than Rs 50 crore shown to have been received from ‘RG’ between 2004 to 2016, whereas the ‘RG’ identified by Gupta, i.e., Rajat Gupta, had admitted to have cash transactions wish Sushen from 2007 onwards and the same are being quantified.”
The UPA government signed a deal with AugustaWestland for AW101 choppers. The company’s CEO Bruno Spagnolini was then arrested for bribing the middlemen in order to secure a deal with the IAF. Former PM Manmohan Singh, Congress Supremo Sonia Gandhi, the then defence minister AK Antony and former IAF Chief SP Tyagi were put to question with regard to this case. It was reported that the choppers were bought despite opposition by the Indian Air Force after Mr Tyagi became the IAF Chief.
Every time the Congress government tries to highlight corruption by other parties (real or fabricated), its past sins come out and the party suffers more loss than gain.