RAIPUR: Ahead of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi trip to poll-bound Chhattisgarh state, the opposition Congress has worked out a strategy to step up its attack on the alleged Rafale deal scam. Adhering to the decision taken by the Congress Working Committee (CWC) in Delhi previous month to take ahead the Rafale issue among the masses and dent the BJP's electoral prospects in the forthcoming Assembly elections in four states, the opposition has commenced its exercise in Chhattisgarh.
PM Modi is scheduled to visit Chhattisgarh's Janjgir-Champa district on September 22 to participate in the Raman Singh government Vikas Yatra, which is renamed as 'Atal Vikas Yatra' in the memory of late Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Ahead of his visit the opposition will intensify its campaign across the state against the Rafale deal as the Raman Singh government is set to launch the second phase of its month-long Vikas Yatra from Dongargarh in Rajnandgaon district on September 5.
The opposition as part of its strategy has begun to hold a demonstration at the district and state level and conduct press conferences to take the issue of Rafale deal to the ground level. The local leaders along with the senior party leaders have been asked to actively participate in the campaign, which the Congress has aimed to turn it into 'people's movement' against the alleged "Rafale deal scam".
The AICC spokesperson and the Bihar state in-charge Shakti Sinh Gohil took a press conference in Chhattisgarh's Bilaspur district a few days ago citing the alleged massive irregularities in the purchase of French twin-engine multi-role fighter jet and asked, "Why was each aircraft purchased at 300 percent higher that the one finalised by the UPA".
The leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad is also slated to visit Chhattisgarh soon to be part of the Congress campaign, a senior party leader informed. From September 8, the Chhattisgarh will witness Congress' rallies and protests that will continue till 15 September in different districts. From September 15 the demonstrations by the Congress party would be held at the state level.
"The campaign will expose the BJP on the massive irregularities on Rafale deal", said chairman Congress media cell Shailesh Nitin Trivedi. However, the ruling BJP remains unfazed. "The Congress should instead first respond on the major corruptions exposed during the UPA regime. Such campaign will never impact the BJP and the people won't buy the Congress party's contention", affirmed the BJP state president Dharamlal Kaushik.