Former cricket administrator Lalit Modi attempted on Friday to turn the tables on the Congress that has demanded a probe into his alleged nexus with BJP leaders, as he claimed in a series of tweets that he met Priyanka Vadra and Robert Vadra in London.
But his social media posts on Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s daughter and son-in-law met with strong defence from the opposition party while even union law minister and BJP leader Sadananda Gowda was dismissive of the statements.
"Happy to meet the Gandhi Family in London. I had run into Robert and Priyanka separately in a restaurant - they were with Timmy Sarna. He has my no. They can call me. Will tell them what I feel about them exactly,” Modi tweeted. “Will mince no words. Will make no deal. But tell them witch hunt will now make them realise I was (innocent). If I remember correctly it was last year and the year before. Doubt either reported it to anyone. They were in power then.”
Sarna heads retail division of major DLF Brands.
Gowda struck out at the ousted IPL boss, blaming him for attempting to create confusion by throwing around baseless charges.
“Today Lalit Modi has dropped names of Priyanka Gandhi and Robert Vadra. Tomorrow he may name somebody,” the minister said. “So, he wants to create some confusion so that somewhere the cases against him are dropped, and somewhere some political activity should go on - so that he can rescue himself from the clutches of law."
The Congress brushed aside these claims, saying meeting someone at a restaurant was no crime, as it also took a dig at the Prime Minister while alleging that Lalit Modi was working at the behest of BJP to divert attention to “non-issues”.
“I can say with full responsibility that neither Priyanka Gandhi nor Robert Vadra ever interacted with Lalit Modi socially. If you see somebody in a restaurant, it is not a crime,” said the party’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala. “Chhota Modi is helping Bada Modi with lies.”
Priyanka Gandhi's office denied reports of a meeting with Lalit Modi.
The Opposition has been gunning for the BJP after reports emerged that foreign minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje helped the expelled IPL commissioner get British travel and immigration papers at a time he was wanted in India for alleged financial irregularities.
The BJP demanded a statement from Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and an explanation from her daughter on the matter.
“What is the relationship between the Gandhi family and Lalit Modi? Why did Priyanka Gandhi and Robert Vadra meet Lalit Modi in London? Priyanka Gandhi needs to clarify on the matter in public,” said BJP spokesperson Narasimha Rao.
Modi’s latest tweets came after the Congress asked for a thorough probe this week into his alleged nexus with the BJP leadership, claiming other ministers from the ruling party too met him in London.