Didn't recommend travel documents for Lalit Modi: Sushma Swaraj

  • PTI, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jul 25, 2015 21:27 IST
The Opposition has been demanding the resignation of external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj for allegedly helping ex-IPL boss Lalit Modi get travel documents. (Sushil Kumar/ Hindustan Times)

External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj defended herself on Saturday against allegations of helping former IPL chief Lalit Modi, saying she never requested or recommended travel documents for him.

In a series of tweets, Swaraj, who is facing ire of the Opposition led by the Congress over the controversy, said it was "absolutely false" that she spoke to Keith Vaz, the British Labour MP, to allow British government to let the former IPL commissioner travel.

"I am saying this time and again that I never requested or recommended travel documents for Lalit Modi," she said.

In another tweet, the minister said, "As a Minister I am accountable to Parliament. That is the only forum to inform the nation."

The Congress has upped its ante against foreign minister Swaraj and Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje -- both accused of helping former IPL chief Lalit Modi -- and disrupted proceedings in the first week of Parliament's monsoon session.

The Congress has been demanding the ministers' resignation ever since a controversy erupted over Swaraj and Raje's alleged help to former IPL chief Lalit Modi to get UK travel papers after his passport was revoked. The ruling BJP has repeatedly stressed there was no wrongdoing on the part of its leaders.

On her earlier tweets when the controversy broke out where Swaraj had maintained that her gesture was based on humanitarian ground, Swaraj said, "I left this to the UK Government to decide under their own laws and regulations. And that is what they did."

"Yes I tweeted this on day one. Yet they spread falsehood...I help people every day. That too on a single tweet...The lady is suffering from cancer for the last 17 years. This was the 10th recurrence of cancer," she tweeted.

Reiterating her stand, she said, "I accepted a debate on the very first day of Parliament session. Congress members are not allowing a debate."

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