PM Narendra Modi criticised Congress over an ABP News report that revealed that BrahMos missile exports faced significant delays during UPA's tenure due to repeated political clearances

In a sharp critique of the Congress party, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday reacted to an exclusive report by ABP News, asserting the detrimental impact of the Congress-led UPA government's policies on India's defence sector. "Congress's habit of delaying, diverting, and obstructing decisions, and making huge profits in the middle has dealt the biggest blow to the defence sector," remarked PM Modi.

The ABP News report unveils significant delays in the export of BrahMos missiles during the UPA government's tenure. The report reveals that repeated political clearances were cited as the reason for halting progress.

A key finding of the report shows that a team from BrahMos Aerospace was prevented from visiting the Philippines just before the Modi government took office in 2014. The report further discloses that in 2011, the Foreign Secretary declared that discussions on BrahMos exports would not proceed until an export policy was formulated. Additionally, in 2010, an Indonesian delegation in New Delhi was stopped from visiting BrahMos Aerospace.

Before the formation of the Modi government, on April 17, 2014, the Director of South in the Ministry of External Affairs wrote a letter to the GM (Design) of Brahmos Aerospace. This letter was written when the team of Brahmos Aerospace was about to go to the Philippines for talks on export. The letter stated that there was no political clearance for the visit to the Philippines, hence the trip required approval from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA).

In April, India delivered the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile system to the Philippines, fulfilling a $374.9 million contract signed between the two countries in 2022. A viral video on social media shows Indian and Philippine personnel sharing sweets after an Indian Air Force C-17 aircraft landed at Clark Air Base, a Philippine Air Force base on Luzon Island.

Defence experts note that this deal, involving a shore-based version of an anti-ship cruise missile with a range of 290 km, represents the first major international export order for the Indian defence sector.

The delivery of the BrahMos missile system comes amid ongoing tensions between the Philippines and China in the South China Sea, underscoring the strategic importance of this defence collaboration.

(With Report by ABP News)