: The Union government on Wednesday chose to steer clear from the political mudslinging over the controversial letter purportedly written by some MPs to the U.S. President Barack Obama, asking him not revoke the ban on granting a visa to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

While Minister of State for Home R.P.N. Singh said it was for the U.S. to decide whom to give a visa and whom to deny, Minister of State for External Affairs Preneet Kaur said India had no role to play in the issue.

Refusing to comment on the controversy that began with the leaking of the letter and later some MPs denying that they have signed the letter, Mr. Singh said: “It is for America to decide as to whom they want to issue the visa or not.” Similarly, Ms. Kaur noted that “it is a call that the Americans have to take.” Reacting to BJP president Rajnath Singh’s visit to the U.S., where he is reportedly making a case for granting a visa to Mr. Modi with senior officials, Ms. Kaur said: “I think it’s not right for anybody to ask the way they are asking.”

Asked whether MPs have done the right thing by writing to the U.S. President, she said: “I can’t say that because it is a democratic country. Everybody has a right to do what they want to do. In their wisdom they have done it, so let us see what happens.”

The U.S. has so far denied visa to Mr. Modi at least twice in the wake of the 2002 Gujarat riots.