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Lalitgate: Who is speaking the truth, Chidambaram's poser to Sushma Swaraj

A day after External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj made a passionate defence of her role in the Lalitgate controversy, the main opposition party, Congress hit back on Friday and accused the senior BJP leader of impropriety and not speaking the truth on the matter.


Lalitgate: Who is speaking the truth, Chidambaram's poser to Sushma Swaraj
Ex-Finance Minister P Chiadambaram has asked Sushma Swaraj to speak the truth on Lalitgate

New Delhi: A day after External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj made a passionate defence of her role in the Lalitgate controversy, the main opposition party Congress hit back on Friday and accused the senior BJP leader of impropriety and not speaking the truth on the matter.

Former Finance Minister and senior Congress leader P Chiadambaram took to Twitter this morning and threw a poser to Swaraj, asking who was speaking the truth over helping fugitive former IPL chief Lalit Modi secure travel documents to meet his ailing wife.

Referring to Swaraj's emotional remarks “If Sonia Gandhi was in my place, what would she have done? Let Lalit Modi's wife die,” Chidambaram said that he would have asked Lalit Modi to approach the Indian High Commission for a temporary travel document.

The former Finance Minister, too, said that they would not have left Lalit Modi's wife die.

The poser from Chidambaram came a day after Swaraj pleaded innocence in the Lalit Modi controversy and reiterated in the Lok Sabha that she had never recommended to the British government that travel documents be granted to the former IPL chief.

Sushma is under Opposition scanner for allegedly helping the former boss of cash-rich Indian Premier League (IPL) obtain travel documents from the UK to travel to Portugal in 2014 to visit his cancer-stricken wife.

Modi has been living in the UK since 2010 when he fled India after cases were registered against him for alleged money laundering.

Speaking in the Lower House, Sushma said that injustice is being done to her as she is not getting a chance to clarify and put forth her opinion.

The minister was, however, able to speak without being shouted down as the Opposition benches were empty due to the ongoing protest by Opposition parties over suspension of 25 Congress MPs from the Lok Sabha.

“Stars are probably not in my favour. That is why those who have always supported me are now demanding my resignation. But, stars will surely turn in my favour again,” she said, making a case for her.

Sushma said she had never recommended or requested the British government to grant Lalit Modi travel documents.

“Words in such communication are important. If I had recommended the UK government to grant travel documents to Lalit Modi, then I would have written that clearly,” the minister told the House.

“I had only conveyed to the UK government that if they decide to grant travel documents to Lalit Modi, that would not affect the India-Britain ties,” the senior BJP leader said.

“Did I help Lalit Modi flee India? No! Did I recommend travel documents for Lalit Modi? No!” Sushma said categorically.

“Lalit Modi's wife has been suffering from cancer for the past 17 years. She was receiving treatment at a research centre in Portugal. She has been diagnosed with cancer for the 10th time. Doctors said this time her cancer is life-threatening,” Sushma informed the House.

“The medical institution said Ms Modi's condition is life-threatening and that her husband must be present during treatment. That's the background of 'humanitarian grounds' on which I helped Lalit Modi,” she clarified.

“I had no role either in taking the decision or in recommending it to the British authorities,” the minister again stated.

Turning to Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, she again asked, “If you were in my place, what would you have done? Let her (Lalit Modi's wife) die?”

“Help has been extended to that lady who is the citizen of India, who was not involved in the crime (IPL money laundering). If helping a lady like this is a crime, then yes, I have committed a crime,” the minister stated.

In no time, the Congress accused her of impropriety and misuse of office besides a keenness "to help a person wanted by law agencies in India". The party called her statement "hogwash".

From Zee News

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