Curtains down on Tharoor controversy: Congress, BJP | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Curtains down on Tharoor controversy: Congress, BJP

The Shashi Tharoor controversy is a closed chapter, the Congress and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) said on Monday, a day after he resigned as minister of state for external affairs over the Indian Premier League (IPL) row.

delhi Updated: Apr 19, 2010 15:43 IST

The Shashi Tharoor controversy is a closed chapter, the Congress and the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) said on Monday, a day after he resigned as minister of state for external affairs over the Indian Premier League (IPL) row.

"The curtains are down on the Tharoor issue after he resigned yesterday (Sunday) night. The controversy is over as far as the party goes. The opposition can't keep harping on the issue now," a Congress spokesperson said on condition of anonymity.

Tharoor, 54, a former top UN official, submitted his resignation to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in a nearly half-hour meeting, the second one on Sunday.

The resignation came soon after top Congress leaders held a meeting with the prime minister and party president Sonia Gandhi and concluded that Tharoor had to go.

The opposition, which had been demanding the removal of Tharoor, welcomed the move.

"The issue is over for us now. Whatever action has to be taken (against Tharoor) will be by the police and investigating agencies,” Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson Prakash Javedekar told IANS.

The Congress party had held a flurry of meetings Sunday attended by senior union ministers over the row at the centre of which was Tharoor and his "mentoring" of the Kochi IPL franchise.

On Friday, Tharoor had put up a spirited defence of himself in the Lok Sabha, claiming he had done no wrong and not used his office to promote the interest of close friend Sunanda Pushkar. The Dubai-based businesswoman had got a sweat equity worth Rs.70 crore in Rendezvous Sports World, a member of the consortium that won the IPL Kochi franchise.

The Tharoor drama was one of the biggest political crises to hit the Congress-led government since its return to power in 2009.

IPL commissioner Lalit Modi had ignited the controversy a week ago when he revealed the ownership pattern of Kochi IPL, stating that Pushkar owned free equity in Rendezvous. Modi accused Tharoor of asking him not to reveal the ownership details -- a charge the minister denied.