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Import Embargo On Defence Equipment, Slammed By P Chidambaram And Abhishek Singhvi

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The Congress party has reacted strongly to the Defence Minister Rajnath Singh’s announcement on the import embargo on defence equipment. Leading the charge was former finance minister and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram in a series of tweets. Thee party said it was only “high sounding jargon” and that ‘atmanirbhar bharat’ was merely a slogan.

Chidambaram in a tweet wrote defence minister promised a “bang” on a Sunday morning but ended with a “whimper”.

“The only importer of defence equipment is the defence ministry. Any import embargo is really an embargo on oneself,” the former home minister said.

What the defence minister said in his “historic Sunday announcement” deserved only an office order from the minister to his secretaries, Chidambaram said in a series of tweets.

“Import embargo is high sounding jargon. What it means is we will try to make the same equipment (that we import today) in 2 to 4 years and stop imports thereafter!” he said.

Another Congress leader, spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi also criticised Singh for dubbing the import restrictions as a push to achieve a self-reliant India, saying there was a “big difference between claims and reality.

Singhvi, in response to a question, said the defence minister’s statement was both “funny as well as unfortunate”.

“Who is the biggest importer of these defence items, it is the defence ministry departments. So the Defence ministry will reduce its imports. Secondly, it will take 3-4 years to reduce the imports,” he said.

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