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BJP alert on US ‘kangaroo court’

New Delhi, Dec. 27: BJP leader Arun Jaitley today advised the party’s Prime Minister candidate, Narendra Modi, not to apply for a US visa after Washington stated there was no change in its policy towards him.

He said the US stance “has clearly been one determined by their ‘kangaroo court’.”

A day after an Ahmedabad court rejected a protest petition seeking Modi’s trial for his alleged involvement in the 2002 violence, PTI quoted a state department spokesperson as saying: “There has been no change to our visa policy. Our long-standing policy ... is he is welcome to apply for a visa and await a review like any other applicant.”

In an article titled “The myopic American stance”, Jaitley noted: “After a due process of law, the (Ahmedabad) court opined that there was not a shred of evidence against Modi. Where does that leave the US opinion on this issue? Modi has not applied for US visa since 2005. My personal advice also has been that he should not apply for a US visa. The American stance... has clearly been one determined by their ‘kangaroo court’. To proclaim Modi guilty even when there was no evidence against him... amounts to immature diplomacy.

“The myopic American stance has the potential of recoiling back at them. It also sets a precedent for a reciprocal response. It is time the Americans reflect on how they have boxed themselves into this untenable situation.”

The US refused Modi a visa in 2005 when he was invited to address the Gujarat diaspora there. The decision of the then Bush administration was taken under a section of the Immigration and Nationality Act that disqualified a foreign government official responsible, directly or indirectly, for “particularly severe violations of religious freedom” from getting a visa.