Trinamool Congress leader Mahua Moitra faced expulsion from the Lok Sabha following the adoption of the Ethics Committee's report that held her guilty of accepting gifts and illegal gratification
Trinamool Congress leader Mahua Moitra faced expulsion from the Lok Sabha following the adoption of the Ethics Committee's report that held her guilty of accepting gifts and illegal gratification.
Moitra responded, likening her expulsion to being sentenced by a "kangaroo court" and accusing the government of weaponizing parliamentary panels to subdue the opposition.
The expulsion motion, moved by Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi, cited Moitra's "unethical conduct" as grounds for her removal from the House. The motion was adopted by a voice vote after a contentious debate in which Moitra was denied the opportunity to present her perspective.
Moitra, addressing reporters, vehemently denied any wrongdoing, stating that she had been found guilty of breaching a code of ethics that she claimed did not exist. She emphasized the absence of evidence supporting the allegations of receiving cash or gifts. The Ethics Committee's recommendation for her expulsion was based on the "cash-for-query" case.
The report presented by Committee Chairman Vinod Kumar Sonkar accused Moitra of "unethical conduct" and contempt of the House. It specifically mentioned her sharing of Lok Sabha credentials, including the User ID and Password of the Lok Sabha Member's Portal, with unauthorized individuals, impacting national security.
During the proceedings, Joshi highlighted Moitra's "unbecoming" conduct as a Member of Parliament, alleging that she had accepted gifts and illegal gratification from a businessman to further his interests, deeming it a serious misdemeanor.
Opposition members, including Trinamool Congress, called for Moitra to be given the opportunity to present her views in the House, a request rejected by Speaker Om Birla, citing past precedents. Birla referred to a directive in 2005 by then-Speaker Somnath Chatterjee, disallowing members involved in a 'cash-for-questions' scam from speaking in the House.
The Ethics Committee's report, based on a complaint filed by BJP member Nishikant Dubey, triggered a series of events leading to Moitra's expulsion.
Meanwhile, Congress MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury on Friday said that all of this is being done based on "baseless facts" and with a "sentiment of revenge." "This was done based on baseless facts and with a sentiment of revenge. This government has insulted women," Adhir said. (With inputs from PTI)