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Madi mails what Modi likes

Madi Sharma identifies herself with WESTT, the Women’s Economic and Social Think Tank

By Anita Joshua in New Delhi

  • Published 30.10.19, 2:45 AM
  • Updated 30.10.19, 2:45 AM
Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The assertion about the Prime Minister’s alleged preference stirs the question who authorised Madi Sharma to say this on Modi’s behalf
Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The assertion about the Prime Minister’s alleged preference stirs the question who authorised Madi Sharma to say this on Modi’s behalf (File picture)

The involvement of someone who professes to be an “international business broker” in organising the Kashmir visit by Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) has kicked up questions galore, particularly given the authority with which she was sending out invites that gave the impression she knew the mind of the Prime Minister’s Office.

This is clear from the email attributed to Madi Sharma and sent to Britain’s Liberal Democrat MEP Chris Davies.

The mail begins by saying “I am organising a prestigious VIP meeting with the Prime Minister of India, His Excellency Narendra Modi and it is my privilege to offer this invitation to you….”

A little later pops up a sentence that is drawing intense attention. “He would like to meet influential decision makers from the European Union,” the mail says.

The assertion about the Prime Minister’s alleged preference stirs the question who authorised Madi Sharma to say this on Modi’s behalf.

A Press Information Bureau (PIB) picture shows Prime Minister Narendra Modi with what the PIB identified as “the Members of European Parliament” in New Delhi on Monday at 7 Lok Kalyan Marg, New Delhi. 7 Lok Kalyan Marg is the official residence and principal workplace of Prime Minister Modi. On the extreme right is Madi Sharma
A Press Information Bureau (PIB) picture shows Prime Minister Narendra Modi with what the PIB identified as “the Members of European Parliament” in New Delhi on Monday at 7 Lok Kalyan Marg, New Delhi. 7 Lok Kalyan Marg is the official residence and principal workplace of Prime Minister Modi. On the extreme right is Madi Sharma (Source: PIB)

Madi Sharma’s mail goes on in an assured and authoritative tone: “I am therefore inquiring if you would be interested to visit Delhi, India, to meet with the Prime Minister. The meeting with the Prime Minister is scheduled for 28th October, with a visit to Kashmir on 29th and a press conference on 30th.”

In the email, Madi Sharma identifies herself with WESTT — the Women’s Economic and Social Think Tank — which, according to her, has been working with the European Parliament and governments and non-governmental organisations across the world, mainly in South Asia, in various capacities focused on the empowerment of women.

“WESTT is on the transparency register of the European Parliament and I am also a Member of the European Economic and Social Committee,” she added.

The mail mentions that “flight and accommodations will be covered and are sponsored by the International Institute for Non-Aligned Studies”.

The IINS website identifies itself as the think tank of the Non-Aligned Movement. The leadership link on the website of this think tank, launched in 1990, lists only the name of Dr Govind Narain Srivastava, who died in 1999.

How either of these two organisations got inducted to organise such a visit remains an unanswered question. Both the foreign ministry and the home ministry in India have remained tightlipped on this turn of events.

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