Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Third Report

Annex 4A

Transcript of conversation between The Sunday Telegraph and Mr Sarosh Zaiwalla, December 1999

  Lunch with Zaiwalla—December 1999 at offices of Zaiwalla and Co.

  RS:  I saw Keith two weeks ago.

  SW:  What did he want.

  RS:  Well he called me. Out of the blue.

  SW:  He is a nice guy.

  RS: Yes. I went to see him. And you know the one thing that he did touch on was that he's got his ministerial post and that he went on to say that he wanted to distance himself from some Asian businessmen. And then he referred to the story that I had done.

  SW:  Which story?

  RS:  The one about you and Tony.

  SW:  Why did he call you?

  RS:  I don't know. We had a very odd lunch meeting. We went to the Dorchester the Chinese.

  SW:  Who invited who.

  RS:  He invited me. I paid. But he invited me. He called me up invited me and said can you take me out on expenses. Ha ha. I went to see him at the Foreign Office.

  SW:  Yes.

  RS:  But he is a very funny character.

  SW:  He is a nice guy.

  RS:  Yes. We popped over to . . . (interrupts).

  SW:  I would . . . unclear . . . since he became a minister.

  RS:  Does he not call you.

  SW:  No. He will speak to you at the Asian function

  (Conversation unclear)

  RS:  Part of his problem is that it took him so long to become a minister because he was not trusted. We all know why, but its whether or not . . . (interrupts).

  SW:  Have . . . (unclear).

  RS:  Is he still very close to other people. Mr Noon . . .

  SW:  He is close to everybody. Have you approached the Hindujas properly.

  RS:  Yes.

  SW:  He brought the Lord Chancellor to the Hindujas.

  RS:  Pardon.

  SW:  The lord chancellors came to the Hindujas diwali party (pause) Not diwali party. The Hindujas had a party. It was the first party with the Labour ministers. The Lord Chancellor was a guest speaker. Keith was there.

  RS:  He was working in the Lord Chancellor's department wasn't he?

  SW:  (Something)

  RS:  He did talk to me then. But it was stuff that I am never going to refer to again. But he did talk to me when I went to meet him for lunch. He was talking to me about Zaiwalla, about the firm.

  SW:  What?

  RS:  Well he said that.

  SW:  Tell me in confidence.

  RS:  In confidence, he said one thing which I am not going to touch on, but he said that you asked him to get an honour.

  SW:  (Cannot hear).

  RS:  Yes, well I said to him that we had already been down that road and to be honest that we had checked all that out. And we saw no . . .

  SW:  You know Keith used to keep telling me as he used to tell everybody else Mr Zaiwalla, Lord Zaiwalla.

  RS:  Right.

  SW:  I'm going to recommend you to the honours. But I know that Keith said that to practically everybody I know (tails off).

  RS:  He's a bit of a charmer.

  SW:  Of course he is. For example whenever I met him he would say Lord Zaiwalla or Lord Loomba, Lord Noon. (Tails off).

  RS:  Yes, but I am telling you about that as a

  SW:  The other problem that we have had involves this Indian trainee girl. Nothing to do with me she has complained . . . I have had no contact with her whatsoever.

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