The Congress on Wednesday rubbished External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj’s charge that a senior Congress leader had approached her to give diplomatic passport to Santosh Bagrodia, a former Minister of State for Coal who was summoned as an accused by the special CBI court on Tuesday.
Swaraj has threatened to reveal the name of the Congress leader in 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.
Asked whether the party was nervous, he said, “Swaraj’s statement is a poor diversionary tactic. She was telling a lie and hence the congress was not worried.”