New Delhi: A political war broke out on Saturday as Rahul Gandhi called Prime Minister Narendra Modi a “thief” and “corrupt” in the Rafale deal and Union Minister JP Nadda hit him back for using derogatory language. The war of words between BJP and Congress began soon after former French president Francois Hollande it was the Indian government which proposed the name of Anil Ambani-led Reliance Defence as its India partner in the Rafale jet deal. Also Read - 'Was Needed to Keep India Safe,' PM Defends Lockdown; Apologises For Inconvenience to People

Union Minister JP Nadda on Friday slammed the Congress president for his “thief” remark on PM Modi saying that such language shows the height of frustration he is going through. “The language which Rahul Gandhi is using these days, derogatory language for the PM is most condemnable. It shows the height of frustration through which he is passing. I would like to make it clear that such activities aren’t going to establish him in politics,” he said. Also Read - PM Modi Thanks Akshay Kumar For Donating Rs 25 Crore to Fight Against Coronavirus

“We all know that his understanding about politics and figures related to Rafale deal is very limited…The figures Rahul Gandhi is quoting is misleading & it also shows that how much less homework he has done as far as the Rafale Deal is concerned,” JP Nadda said. Also Read - Mann ki Baat: I Know You Would Forgive me, PM Modi Apologises For Lockdown

Earlier in the day, MoS for MEA MJ Akbar said that the Memorandum of Understanding for delivering the Rafale aircraft was signed when UPA was in power in 2012. “They say that the deal between Dassault and Reliance took place a few days before signing (MoU), which is absolutely untrue. MoU was signed between Rafale and Reliance on February 13, 2013, when Rahul Gandhi was in power. Another lie peddled by Congress President is exposed,” MJ Akbar said.

Rahul Gandhi led the Congress charge on Saturday following Holland’s remarks and said the former French President had called him a “thief” in the Rafale deal. He also sought a Joint Parliamentary Committee probe into the agreement to purchase 36 fighter jets from France.

“Now what the ex-President of France is saying is that the Prime Minister of India is a thief… that is what the statement is saying. It is very important for the PM now to either accept Hollande’s statement and say that he is telling the truth or that Hollande is not telling the truth and here is the truth,” Gandhi said.