Thursday, 11 August, 2022
HomePoliticsChidambaram demands publication of documents on Rafale deal

Chidambaram demands publication of documents on Rafale deal

The senior Congress leader said that BJP's argument of the documents being "stolen" flies in the face of the Constitutional right that ensures freedom of speech.

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New Delhi: Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram Thursday demanded publication of all documents related to the Rafale aircraft deal, saying Article 19 of the Constitution ensured people’s rights regarding freedom of speech and expression.

He also said the celebrated judgement of the US Supreme Court in 1971 in the case of the Pentagon Papers was a “complete answer” to the attorney general’s arguments that the media cannot publish “so-called secret papers”.

“We fully support the publication of documents pertaining to the Rafale deal. The argument that they are ‘stolen papers’ flies in the face of Article 19 of the Constitution,” he said in separate tweets.

The Article 19 of the Constitution ensures protection of certain rights regarding freedom of speech and expression besides others.

On June 30, 1971, the Supreme Court of the United States overturned the Richard Nixon administration’s effort to restrain ‘The New York Times’ and ‘The Washington Post’ from publishing a top-secret history of the Vietnam War called the Pentagon Papers.

The government had on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that documents related to the Rafale fighter jet deal were stolen from the Defence Ministry and threatened The Hindu newspaper with the Official Secrets Act for publishing articles based on them.

Those who put documents on the Rafale deal in the public domain were guilty under the act as also contempt of court, Attorney General K K Venugopal said before a three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi.


Also read: What’s Official Secrets Act, the law Modi govt wants to use against Rafale papers ‘leak’


 

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2 COMMENTS

  1. 1. Citizen-voters like me too want that details about Rafale aircrafts deal be published. But they also know that Rafale deal is just one instance of alleged corruption in defence deals. My question in this regard is very simple: Do Congress & other opposition parties wish that corruption in all fields, including defence deals, be curbed? Or they just wish to be in power by making allegations of corruption and win over gullible voters? 2. Congress President Shri Rahul Gandhi has repeatedly made serious allegations against NDA government and in particular against PM Shri Narendra Modi as regards Rafale aircrafts deal. Citizens like me are not sure that the Congress President is really serious about curbing corruption. 3. In fact they (citizens) think that (a) Shri Rahul Gandhi wishes to make use of allegations of corruption to seize power and (b) he is not at all serious about curbing corruption in defence deals or about curbing use of black money in elections. 4. Citizens wish that Shri Rahul Gandhi should make a public announcement about what the Congress led government ( UPA govt.) would do about Rafale deal assuming that UPA is voted to power after 2019 Lok Sabha election. My questions are: would the Rafale deal be renegotiated, would it be cancelled, would those who are responsible in NDA government be tried for misuse of power? These questions are in citizens’ mind and the need a straight forward answer. Would Congress president give answers in national interest? Let us how he responds to questions from citizens like me.

    • You are right , Modi also came to power telling the citizens that he will curb corruption.. But on practice he did the opposite. Tried to make changes to RTI act, corporate funding to political parties more opaque through Electrol Bonds and never implemented LOKPAL and whistle blower acts passed by the parliament.

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