There has never been a case where an alleged offender has so brazenly cocked a snook at the Indian law enforcement agencies and the entire might of the government as former IPL commissioner Lalit Modi has done. Unfazed by the prospect of Interpol issuing a Red corner notice against him for his arrest at the request of the Indian Enforcement Directorate, the flamboyant former cricket administrator is taking a vicarious pleasure in mocking his so-called “persecutors.”
And the man who figures prominently on his firing line is none other than his old bête noire – Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.
In a series of tweets which have strangely gone unreported in the Indian media (once again reconfirming the belief that the media cannot dare to touch a “powerful” minister in the NDA Government), Modi has even accused Jaitley of misleading the parliament by claiming that a light blue corner Interpol notice was issued against him in the past for alleged economic offences related to the Indian Premier league (IPL).
Lalit Modi has also reproduced a page from the Interpol website listing different shades of notices and wondered how did Jaitley conjured up the light blue corner shade which did not figure on the Interpol site.
In another tweet, Lalit Modi has taken a swipe at the co-owner of The Times of India group, Vineet Jain. What happened @vineetjaintimes still no #redcornernotice from @INTERPOL_HQ or u just print garbage as usual.
Replying to a tweet from one Mukesh Mittal @hallagullaboy who advised him not to speak against Jaitley without any prooof because it could land him in jail, a defiant Modi says: “Let him try. If it was so easy – what happened to his red corner notice?”
Modi has also thanked Ram Jethmalani for a write-up The unstoppable Lalit Modi in which the eminent lawyer has claimed that the former IPL boss was a victim of vendetta politics.
“Lalit Modi continues unfazed and undeterred. He is confident that the Government has no case against him under the PMLA, and he is victim of vendetta first by Chidambaram, and now by Jaitley. He has almost challenged the government to issue the Red Corner notice against him, and then face him in an international court. He always had a ready, credible answer and counter for every question that Rajdeep Sardesai asked. So much so, that by the end of the interview, the interviewer came through more like the interviewee.”
– Ram Jethmalani in his blog
Referring to a Lalit Modi’s recent interview to Rajdeep Sardesai in London, Jethmalani says Modi has repeatedly stated with his usual confidence and devil may care, ”that the Finance Minister is as deeply involved in the IPL rot and part of the ‘cricket mafia’, as are Srinivasan, Dalmia, Mathur, and Rajiv Shukla. In fact, he concludes his interview by saying that the greatest bond between the Congress and the BJP is the murky side of the IPL.”
The noted lawyer has also claimed that Lalit Modi’s second interview to India Today TV has been blacked out of the Internet, though Aaj Tak has put out a dubbed Hindi version of it. “So too, his statements against the Finance Minister hardly find mention in the reportage, though everything else does,” Jethmalani writes, adding “Does this mean that the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting or the Enforcement Directorate are flashing their iron fists to the media?”
In this midst of this verbal warfare, both the India government and Lalit Modi will be watching the Interpol response on the CBI’s request to issue Red corner notice against the former IPL commissioner. The real drama will unfold then!
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