Rafale is on everyone’s lips these days. Starting from the country’s Prime Minister, to Defence Minister to amateur defence enthusiasts to even the commoners, and of-course the man who started this whole debate, Congress President Rahul Gandhi. However amid this, a video of an eight year old girl explaining the entire Rafale deal to Rahul Gandhi in the simplest of terms is going viral on the Internet.
The girl in the video is seen using two pencil boxes to explain the difference of prices between the previous deal that UPA government was discussing with the Dassault Aviation but couldn’t finalise, and the current one.
Pointing towards an empty pencil box, she refers to it as Gandhi’s idea of a Rafale jet that is completely empty from inside and costs Rs 720 crores. On the other hand, she picks up another pencil box that has various items in it and refers to it as PM Modi’s version of a Rafale jet with modern weaponry, costing Rs 1600 crores.
“Rahul Gandhi does not understand this basic difference between a jet that is empty and one laden with arms and ammunition,” the girl is seen saying in the video.
Her video was retweeted by Defence Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman who thanked the girl for taking interest in the Rafale deal. “Thanks for posting this. My special thanks to this smart young lady (dear child, if affection permitted) for taking interest in the matter of fighter aircraft Rafale. My good wishes for her to fly one of them as a trained fighter pilot of the Indian Air Force,” the Defence Minister in her tweet.
The row surrounding the Rafale deal intensified in the recently-concluded Winter Session of Parliament after Rahul Gandhi and Nirmala Sitharaman exchanged verbal blows over the deal. “Comparing the cost of Rs 526 crore with Rs 1,600 crores is like comparing apples to oranges. The cost quoted in 2007 will it remain the same in 2016, because there is escalation cost and there is exchange rate variation,” she said, adding: “The price of the basic aircraft cannot be compared with the price of weaponised aircraft.”