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Politics
‘Why did Sushma Swaraj keep MEA in the dark about intervention in Lalit Modi visa case?’
14-08-2015

New Delhi: Senior Congress leader and former finance minister P Chidambaram on Friday questioned Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj as to why did she keep her ministry in the dark about her intervention in visa application by Lalit Modi, the former chief of the Indian Premier League.

Swaraj, who has been battling demands for her resignation over alleged ‘quid pro quo’ in relation to Lalit Modi, has denied any wrong doing in the case. Congress has accused her of being involved in conflict of interest because her husband and daughter were lawyers for Modi. In a series of tweets, Chidambaram said, “If Ms Sushma Swaraj wished to help Lalit Modi on purely humanitarian grounds, why did she not advise him to apply to the Indian High Commission in London for a temporary Indian travel document valid for visiting only Portugal?”

 “Why did she not instruct the Foreign Secretary and the High Commissioner to issue a temporary travel document valid only for Portugal? Why did she keep her Ministry in the dark about her intervention? Why did she think that Lalit Modi deserved to get a British travel document rather than an Indian travel document?”

The former minister also said that Sushma Swaraj and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley were selecting quoting his correspondence with George Osborne, UK’s Chancellor of the Exchequer. “On the Chidambaram-Osborne correspondence, why is the government refusing to release the letters between the Finance Ministers of two countries? Why are Mr Jaitley and Ms Swaraj selectively quoting a few words from the letters instead of releasing the full text?