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State legislators’ delegation drops US from tour plan

After Urban Development Minister Azam Khan’s run-in with the authorities at Logan airport in Boston in the US,the Commonwealth Parliamentary Delegation from the state has dropped US from their itinerary.

Written by Express News Service | Lucknow | Published: April 30, 2013 1:52 am

After Urban Development Minister Azam Khan’s run-in with the authorities at Logan airport in Boston in the US,the Commonwealth Parliamentary Delegation from the state has dropped US from their itinerary.

The 22-member delegation,comprising members from both houses of the legislature and headed by Speaker Mata Prasad Pandey,was to leave on a tour of the US,London and Istanbul on May 21.

Now there will be a revised tour schedule,which will not include the US. “We cannot commit on the revised schedule as there has to be confirmation from various departments in the foreign countries. It has not been officially cancelled but the US has been removed from the list,” an official in the Vidhan Sabha said.

Azam confirmed that the delegation will not visit the US. “It will be confined to other countries but not visit the US,” he said in Rampur on Monday.

After returning to Rampur on Sunday,Azam interacted with newsmen and branded the US as the biggest enemy of Muslims. “Leave aside humiliation at the airport,I could have been implicated in the Boston blasts or any new conspiracy. For this they just had to put a map of the White House in my pocket,” he said.

Surprisingly though,Azam did not blame Minister for External Affairs Salman Khurshid. “I don’t know what is the status of Khurshid in the US. But I am clear that he is very narrow-minded. Muslims have understood his position and even his wife Louis Khurshid lost the election,” he said.

Azam,who is scheduled to leave for South Africa on April 29,did not disclose the purpose of the visit. “Gandhi had learnt a lot at South Africa. I am also going to learn a few things,” he said. Azam’s visit to South Africa is tentatively from April 29 to May 4.

Azam’s allegations against Khurshid baseless: BJP

LUCKNOW: The BJP on Monday rejected as “baseless” Urban Development Minister Azam Khan’s claim that he was detained at a US airport at the behest of External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid.Talking to reporters at the state BJP headquarters,BJP national spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi said no one had control over the US government and their police function without government interference. She said that such an incident should be criticised,but Indians should protest in a united manner. She said the SP,which is now raising the issue,had remained silent when visa was denied to Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi.

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