"I am asking these questions as his misadventure is impairing national interest and I hope Rahul Gandhi and the Congress Party would respond immediately," Arun Jaitley said in a blog on Facebook.

Finance minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday termed as “complete falsehood” the charges levelled by Congress chief Rahul Gandhi over the Rafale fighter planes deal, and posed 15 questions to Congress on the issue.

While denying allegations over price of the fighter planes, procedure followed in sealing the deal with France, and favouring of a private industrialist, Jaitley also made counter-allegations of delaying the deal by more than a decade during the UPA rule, launching a false campaign and trying to delay the procurement despite there being a need for the forces to improve their combat ability.

He claimed the Modi government bought 36 Rafale aircraft on terms “better than the ones conveyed by Dassault in the L1 bid of 2007”, and pointed out that the fighters are armed with weapons.

“An aircraft without weaponry is of little use in a war. It is only a f lying instrument,” Jaitley said in a blog posting. He alleged that the UPA government suffered from a policy paralysis and asked if the delay of over a decade (the idea of getting multi-role combat aircraft was mooted in June 2001) was due to incompetence and indecisiveness of the previous dispensation.

(11) Are Shri Gandhi and his Party aware of the fact that there are two ways of acquiring a defence equipment, i.e., either by competitive bidding or by an Inter-Governmental Agreement? 

(12) Can Mr. Gandhi and his Party deny that the UPA Government in 2007 itself had shortlisted the Rafale as technically- acceptable and L1 in price competition? 

(13) Can Shri Gandhi and his Party deny that considering the urgency of the defence requirement, the Government of India and the French Government agreed to execute the supply of 36 Rafale aircraft at terms better than the 2007 offer of the UPA? 

(14) Can it be denied that both the Price Negotiation Committee and the Contract Negotiation Committee negotiated for 14 months before concluding the deal?

(15) Can it be denied that before the deal was executed, the Cabinet Committee on Security approved the transaction? 

I am asking the above questions and I hope Shri Rahul Gandhi and the Congress Party would respond immediately.