Everyone knows how quick and efficient External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj is when it comes to Twitter. So, it should come as no surprise that she responded to an @ANI_News tweet Wednesday morning. The catch being that she plans to reveal, in Parliament, the name of a senior Congress leader who lobbied her for a diplomatic passport for a coal scam accused leader.
The series of tweets go as follows:
A senior Congress leader was pressing me hard to give diplomatic passport to the Coal Scam accused Santosh Bagrodia. @ANI_news— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) July 22, 2015
I will disclose name of the leader on the floor of the House. @imTejasBarot— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) July 22, 2015
Santosh Bagrodia, who was minister of state for coal under then prime minister Manmohan Singh in 2008-2009, has been named as an accused in a case linked to the illegal allocation of a coal block in Maharashtra to a private company. He was summoned by a special CBI court on Tuesday, reported NDTV .
Shortly afterwards, Bagrodia hit back saying that he himself had approached the foreign minister for a diplomatic passport.
“I am eligible for a diplomatic passport. I can’t see why my name is dragged into this, ” Bagrodia told India Today TV.
Twitter has got the popcorn ready:
Sushma swaraj Mam will reveal everything on Twitter itself….obviously… She has taken lessons from Modi… Lalit Modi..!— PrettyAwesome (@Prettyawesome_i) July 22, 2015
There are also some who are keen on giving her advice:
@SushmaSwaraj if today also the wash-out then humble suggestion from me is to use social media to put forward your side of story.— Narendra (@NarendraNMistry) July 22, 2015
The bombshell has, apparently, resulted in Congress backtracking a protest planned outside the Parliament.
Reacting to the development, Congress communication department head Randeep Surjewala told The Indian Express that the remarks show her “desperation to stay relevant.” He said the passports of all the coal scam accused is surrendered in court. “It is the height of desperation to stay relevant. In fact, the desperation to stay relevant is achieving Himalayan proportions in the BJP… She must know the basics… If you are an accused in a cognizable offence, then your passport is taken away by the court. The passport is made to surrender in the court. And if you have to travel abroad, you need permission of the court… When we last checked, Swaraj was holding on to her post as External Affairs Minister despite grave charges against her and not the judge of the special CBI court. So Santosh Bagrodia does not need her permission,” Surjewala said.
We are hoping this isn’t a good teaser to a bad film. Let’s not forget that Swaraj is already facing flak for allegedly supporting tainted former Indian Premier League chief Lalit Modi’s bid for British travel papers.
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