NEW DELHI: Indian politician and diplomat, Hamid Ansari has hit back at the BJP for accusing him of inviting a Pakistani journalist having links with ISI to India when he was the Vice President, saying that a ‘litany of falsehood’ has been unleashed on him.
Ansari in a statement on Wednesday denied meeting or inviting Pakistani journalist Nusrat Mirza. He also rejected BJP’s charges that he had, as India’s ambassador to Iran, “compromised national interest.”
Denying the allegations, Ansari said, “..a litany of falsehood has been unleashed on me personally in sections of the media and by the official spokesperson of the Bharatiya Janata Party”. He stated, “It is a known fact that invitations to foreign dignitaries by the Vice President of India are on the advice of the Government, generally through the Ministry of External Affairs…”
He said, “The Government of India has all the information and is the only authority to tell the truth. It is a matter of record that after my stint in Tehran [as India’s Ambassador to Iran] I was appointed India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York. My work there has been acknowledged at home and abroad.” Ansari said his work as “Ambassador to Iran was at all times within the knowledge of the Government of the day.”
BJP spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia earlier on Wednesday in a press conference asked Ansari and the Congress to respond to the supposed claims of Mirza made in a recent interaction with journalist and YouTuber Shakil Chaudhary that he visited India five times during the United Progressive Alliance rule and passed on sensitive information collected in India to Pakistan’s ISI.
Bhatia cited Mirza’s purported comments that he had visited India on Ansari’s invitations and also met him.