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Now, Kandahar haunts Jaswant

Cong seeks a joint parliamentary panel to probe whether $200 mn ransom was paid for the release of 166 passengers.

india Updated: Aug 03, 2006 15:28 IST

After the 'mole' issue, Congress on Thursday again trained their guns on senior BJP leader Jaswant Singh for his role in the Kandahar hijacking crisis demanding a joint parliamentary committee probe on whether $200 million were paid as ransom for the release of 166 passengers.

Raising the issue during Zero Hour in Lok Sabha, Madhusudan Mistry referred to revelations made by Singh in his controversial book A Call to Honour on the hijacking of an Indian Airlines plane in December 1999 from Kathmandu to Kandahar in Afghanistan.

In the book, Singh has contended that the Union Cabinet had then rejected the ransom demanded by the hijackers. In view of this decision, why did Singh fly to Kandahar with three terrorists who were freed in exchange for the passengers? Mistry asked.

"What was in the red bag carried by Singh?" he asked. Parliamentary Affairs Minister PR Dasmunsi said he would convey the member's concern to the Home Minister.

The 'mole' issue was raised by Devendra Prasad Yadav who said the former External Affairs Minister must apologise to the nation for making "irresponsible" statements.

Singh had created a sensation by alleging that there was a "mole" in the PMO during Narasinha Rao's regime who leaked nuclear secrets to the US but failed to name him.

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