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Home > News > PTI

'Which Thomas Graham is Jaswant talking about?'

August 02, 2006 21:50 IST

Former American ambassador Harry Barnes, whom Bharatiya Janata Party leader Jaswant Singh has named as the recipient of a letter about a mole in the office of late prime minister P V Narasimha Rao, has said that he has no knowledge of the man who purportedly wrote the missive.

Singh had on Tuesday said in Parliament that Barnes had received a letter was written by US Senator Thomas Graham in this regard.

Barnes, who was the US envoy to India during 1981-85, denied knowledge of 'any Senator' going by the name Thomas Graham and said that the best way out would be to ask Singh himself to sort out the controversy over a spy who allegedly leaked nuclear secrets from the Prime Minister's Office to the US in 1995.

"I find the reporting very confusing," Barnes told PTI on phone from his home in Peachem, Vermont, adding: "I was not in India in 1995 (when the letter was purportedly written). I was the ambassador between 1981 and 1985."

Referring to reports linking him to a Senator Graham in connection with the letter, which has been referred to by Singh in his book A Call To Honour, the soft-spoken former envoy said, "I knew of no Senator Graham."

Barnes, however, said he knew two men with the same name. "A Thomas Graham was a representative of the Rockefeller Foundation and the second Thomas Graham was the head of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency in the 1990s," he said.

"The dates are very confusing," Barnes said, while making the point that he had seen part of a published account of the letter that did not show his name.

More embarrassment came for the BJP and Jaswant Singh on Wednesday when the United States distanced itself from the purported letter on a PMO mole saying it was a 'fraudulent, poor imitation' of official US correspondence.

"The letter does not contain a shred of truth. The US was not asked to examine it (the letter) before its publication in newspapers. Had we been asked, we would have pointed out that it is fraudulent, a poor imitation of official US government correspondence," a senior Administration official told PTI.

© Copyright 2006 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
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Number of User Comments: 5

Sub: Can U believe Americans?

There is something else said in interview to TV channel AajTak. Then Mr.Barnes can't remember so many things and he has to 'confirm' with Mr.Graham ...

Posted by Purushottam Dayama

Sub: surprising

It is hardly surprising that the U.s has denied the incident. All the more reason why the Govt should get to the bottom of the ...

Posted by vasumathi2

Sub: Jaswant Singh's Allegations.

Has Mr. Jaswant Singh lost his mind? He seems to be entangling himsellf unnecessarily in a web of contradictions by naming a foreign government official ...

Posted by Dinkar Koppikar

Sub: There is a Thomas Graham

Hi, There is a senator with that name and also another senator Mcgovern\'s chief of staff was Thomas Graham. regards Pranshu B Saxena

Posted by Pranshu B Saxena

Sub: Who is Thomas Graham

Jaswant Singh himself is to be blamed for making a fool of himself. Being a former senior Cabinet Minister he should have been more responsible ...




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