The former head of the Home Affairs Select Committee, Keith Vaz, one of Britain’s longest- serving Indian-origin MPs allegedly persuaded visa officials on behalf of Lalit Modi, the controversial Indian Premier League founder and helped him escape to London amid the IPL betting controversy.
In a report by The Sunday Times, it was revealed that Vaz wrote to Sarah Rapson, the director-general of UK visas and immigration, asking whether IPL cricket league founder Lalit Modi’s “travel document could be made available.” Vaz was the chairman of the influential House of Commons Home Affairs Select Committee back then and was required to scrutinise and hold to account the work of Rapson and her department, the newspaper stated.
Vaz has, however, denied any wrongdoing or conflict of interest and has claimed that he had treated Modi’s case the same as others who sought his help regarding such matters.
Modi went to London in 2010 as claims surfaced that the IPL tournament was entangled in alleged match-fixing and illegal betting.
Conservative MP Andrew Bridgen has reportedly referred the case to Kathryn Hudson, parliamentary standards commissioner.