Lok Sabha expels Mahua Moitra
Lok Sabha expels Mahua Moitra

Though TMC had strongly argued to allow Ms. Moitra to speak on the floor of the House, Mr. Joshi quoted precedence to object. Speaker Om Birla put the resolution to vote without allowing her to speak

The Lok Sabha on December 8, 2023, expelled Trinamool Congress member Mahua Moitra over the “cash-for-query” allegation through a voice vote amid chaos.

Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Prahlad Joshi moved the motion to expel Ms. Moitra as per the recommendation of Ethics Committee report, which found her guilty of sharing her credentials with others, accepted gifts for favours from a businessman.

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Though Trinamool Congress had strongly argued to allow Mahua Moitra to speak on the floor of the House, Mr. Joshi quoted precedence to object. Speaker Om Birla put the resolution to vote without allowing her to speak.

Opposition members walked out of the House even as the vote was being conducted.

Earlier, Ethics Committee chairman Vinod Kumar Sonkar tabled the panel’s first report when the House re-convened at noon after an adjournment during the Question Hour. Trinamool Congress members and some from the Congress trooped in the Well of the House raising slogans demanding a copy of the report.

Give at least 48 hours to study ethics panel report on Mahua Moitra: TMC

Trinamool Congress MP Kalyan Banerjee had said the party has written to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, urging him to give at least 48 hours to read the ethics panel report. However, the resolution was taken up for discussion after the House assembled after lunch.

The Lok Sabha witnessed two adjournments on Friday over the report amid Opposition protests.

Amid uproar, BJP member Rajendra Agrawal, who was in the chair, adjourned the proceedings till 2 p.m.

usinessman Darshan Hiranandani, who allegedly paid Ms. Moitra to raise questions in Parliament about the Adani Group, had claimed in a signed affidavit that Mahua Moitra targeted industrialist Gautam Adani to “malign and embarrass” Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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At a meeting on November 9, the Committee adopted its report recommending Ms. Moitra’s expulsion from the Lok Sabha over the “cash-for-query” allegation. Six members of the panel, including suspended Congress member Preneet Kaur, voted in favour of the report. Four members of the panel belonging to opposition parties submitted dissent notes.

Also read: I was asked who I speak to at night and which hotels I stayed in and with whom in the last five years: Mahua Moitra

The Opposition members termed the report a “fixed match” and said the complaint filed by BJP Lok Sabha member Nishikant Dubey, which the panel reviewed, was not supported by a “shred of evidence”. Ms. Moitra can be expelled only if the House votes in favour of the panel’s recommendation.

Ethics panel report a political vendetta: TMC MP Sudip Bandyopadhyay

Trinamool Congress leader in Lok Sabha Sudip Bandyopadhyay described the Ethics Committee’s recommendation to expel party MP Mahua Moitra in a “cash-for-query” allegation as “political vendetta” and claimed that it was aimed at stopping her from raising issues against the Adani Group.

Mr. Bandyopadhyay said he had a one-on-one meeting with Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, who informed him that the report would be tabled along with a resolution.

usinessman Darshan Hiranandani, who allegedly paid Ms. Moitra to raise questions in Parliament about the Adani Group, had claimed in a signed affidavit that Mahua Moitra targeted industrialist Gautam Adani to “malign and embarrass” Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

At a meeting on November 9, the Committee adopted its report recommending Ms. Moitra’s expulsion from the Lok Sabha over the “cash-for-query” allegation. Six members of the panel, including suspended Congress member Preneet Kaur, voted in favour of the report. Four members of the panel belonging to opposition parties submitted dissent notes.

Also read: I was asked who I speak to at night and which hotels I stayed in and with whom in the last five years: Mahua Moitra

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The Opposition members termed the report a “fixed match” and said the complaint filed by BJP Lok Sabha member Nishikant Dubey, which the panel reviewed, was not supported by a “shred of evidence”. Ms. Moitra can be expelled only if the House votes in favour of the panel’s recommendation.

Ethics panel report a political vendetta: TMC MP Sudip Bandyopadhyay
Trinamool Congress leader in Lok Sabha Sudip Bandyopadhyay described the Ethics Committee’s recommendation to expel party MP Mahua Moitra in a “cash-for-query” allegation as “political vendetta” and claimed that it was aimed at stopping her from raising issues against the Adani Group.

Mr. Bandyopadhyay said he had a one-on-one meeting with Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, who informed him that the report would be tabled along with a resolution.

He told the Speaker that Ms. Moitra should be given time to make her speech on the floor of the House to which Mr. Birla replied that half an hour would be given for discussion on the matter.

Mr. Bandyopadhyay asked why was the MP who alleged that Ms. Moitra was paid cash for asking questions not called to the Ethics Committee meeting.

“The first meeting (of the ethics panel) ended in a short time and could not produce any result. Why was a second meeting not held? Why such a hurry?” he posed.

Mr. Bandyopadhyay also asked why was the report being tabled on a Friday, which is dedicated to Private Members’ Business. “It could have been introduced on Monday… Everywhere we find there is some motivation. We can say it is absolute political vendetta,” he said.

Mr. Bandyopadhyay claimed that the government was “unable to digest Ms. Moitra’s allegation against the Adani group. “They want her to be stopped.” “The whole country has seen how the first meeting started and ended. This projection of the outcome and result of the meeting cannot go to the extent that one Member of Parliament is expelled,” he added.

(With inputs from PTI)