Government on Thursday sought to drag Congress into the controversy raging over some of its key leaders' questionable links with Lalit Modi, saying the former IPL boss committed all offences during the UPA rule but it took no action against him.
While law minister Sadanand Gowda attacked Congress alleging the UPA government did not take any action against Modi, his cabinet colleague Rajiv Pratap Rudy dismissed the demand of resignation of external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj and Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje.
"They (Congress) have lost their base across the country. They are searching for some issue but they are not getting any issue. During their regime everything has happened. Why did they not take any action against Lalit Modi? Why did they not bring him back to India? What had refrained them (from doing so)?" Gowda asked. He insisted that Swaraj supported Modi, accused of laundering money to the tune of over Rs 700 crore, due to "humanitarian concern" over the health of his wife.
Congress has said that the UPA government strongly pursued probe against Modi and took up the matter of his deportation to India with the UK government. The then finance minister P Chidambaram had even met his British counterpart to push the matter, besides writing to him twice.
Asked about the demand for resignation of Swaraj and Raje, union minister Rajiv Pratap Rudy said, "It is just an imagination of Congress and nothing like that is going to happen."
"There is no such issue and I think everything has been clarified by our spokesperson. So I don't think there is much to be read into what is happening," Rudy said.
Though BJP and the government have come in full support of Swaraj who helped Modi obtain travel documents from the UK, where he has been staying after he left India to avoid investigative agencies, they have been more restrained in their defence of Raje, who has been accused of secretly helping him in his immigration.
A company owned by Raje's son Dushyant Singh, who is an MP, also reportedly received investment from Modi, an old family friend of Raje.