UPA gave sweet deal to Kingfisher Airlines to keep it afloat: BJP

rahul gandhi mallya L-R: Kingfisher head Vijay Mallya, Congress President Rahul Gandhi

In an all-out attack against the Congress, the BJP on September 13 alleged that the previous UPA government had given a 'sweet deal' to the beleaguered Kingfisher Airlines to keep it afloat and suggested that the airline was perhaps owned by the Gandhi family.

Attacking Rahul Gandhi at a press meet, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national spokesperson Sambit Patra, showing a purported confessional statement of a hawala trader, alleged that the Congress chief had links with a shell company.

He claimed that Rahul Gandhi was on the backfoot in the case of Kingfisher Airlines and its promoter Vijay Mallya as well as the entire Gandhi family travelled on the airline and their travel was upgraded to business class for free.

"The entire Gandhi family was in fact helping Mallya and Kingfisher Airlines with the sweet deal," Patra said, while showing a bunch of documents related to the loans given by banks to the airline.

"There is a series of letters between the RBI (Reserve Bank of India) and the SBI (State Bank of India). These letters show us how the previous dispensation under Sonia Gandhi was biased, partial and kept all norms and regulations at bay to give a sweet deal to Kingfisher Airlines," he alleged.

The BJP leader was responding to Rahul Gandhi's demand for a probe into Mallya's claim that he had met Finance Minister Arun Jaitley before leaving India.

"Sometimes it seems the airline was not owned by Mallya, but by the Gandhi family in proxy," Patra said, adding that Rahul Gandhi, who himself is out on bail (in the National Herald case), had no right to question others on corruption.

The war of words between the ruling BJP and the Congress was triggered after Mallya's statement yesterday that he had met Jaitley before leaving for the UK.