Congress steps up attack on Sushma; BJP terms it a 'non-issue'

First full-scale crisis after the NDA regime took charge; leaders attempt damage control both within and outside the BJP.

Updated - November 16, 2021 05:00 pm IST

Published - June 16, 2015 10:00 am IST

The Congress continued to press for External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj’s resignation for her role in facilitating travel documents in the U.K. for the scam-tainted former Indian Premier League (IPL) commissioner.

Hitting back at the Congress, the BJP on Tuesday said the opposition party was “frustrated” and is using a “non-issue” to target the External Affairs Minister.

Here are the top developments:

1 Shiv Sena on Tuesday said it was imperative for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to step in and order an investigation into the controversy. >Read more
2 Lalit Modi had dismissed allegations levelled against him in the controversy, saying that he was being targeted as part of a political conspiracy aimed at destabilising the Narendra Modi government. >Read more
3 Mr. Modi's counsel Mehmood Abdi accused former UPA Ministers Salman Khursheed, P. Chidambaram and Shashi Tharoor of being behind the current controversy.
4 Demanding Ms. Swaraj's resignation, Congress spokesperson Ajoy Kumar said: "The BJP, the External Affairs Minister and the whole government have come out to save an accused of the Enforcement Directorate." >Read more
5 BJP MP Kirti Azad, hinting at a feud within the party on Twitter, referred to a party insider playing a role in leaking information about Ms. Swaraj’s recommendation and her family’s association with Mr. Modi. >Read more
6 The U.K. said it will not probe into the allegations against Labour party MP Keith Vaz. The Commissioner for Standards examined a complaint of conflict-of-interest and dismissed it for lack of sufficient evidence. >Read more
7 The Union government and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh came out in full support of Ms. Swaraj. Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah said the recommendation was made on “humanitarian” and not “moral” grounds. >Read more
8 Samajwadi Party came out in support of Ms. Swaraj over her help to Lalit Modi, saying what she did was “perfectly alright” and not a “crime” as people in power have to accommodate the requests of people in need. >Read more
9 Ms. Swaraj defended her decision to recommend travel documents for former Indian Premier League commissioner Lalit Modi, after taking a "humanitarian view" and asserted that she asked the British government to examine his request and follow the rules.
10 Ms. Swaraj put out her statement on the microblogging site Twitter, clarifying that she had pointed out that if British authorities were to give travel documents to Mr. Modi, who has sought the documents to be able to travel to Portugal for the treatment of his wife, India would not object.
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