Mahua Moitra case | Meeting of Lok Sabha’s Ethics Committee postponed to Nov 9

Mahua Moitra case | Meeting of Lok Sabha’s Ethics Committee postponed to Nov 9

File picture of TMC MP Mahua Moitra

File picture of TMC MP Mahua Moitra
| Photo Credit: Shashi Shekhar Kashyap

The Lok Sabha Ethics Committee meeting to consider and adopt its draft report on the cash-for-query allegations against TMC MP Mahua Moitra has been postponed to November 9 from November 7, according to a notice from the Lok Sabha secretariat.

No reason has been officially cited for rescheduling the meeting.

The convening of the meeting for adopting the draft report means that the committee headed by BJP MP Vinod Kumar Sonkar has finished its enquiry and will now be making its recommendation after its members ranged along party lines in their last deliberations on November 2.

The BJP members are in a majority in the 15-member committee which is likely to take a grim view of the charges against Moitra, more so after she accused Mr. Sonkar of asking filthy and personal questions to her in the last meeting before walking out in a rage along with opposition members.

There are indications the committee may make a recommendation against her in its report to Speaker Om Birla amid a possibility of dissent notes from opposition members.

All five opposition members had stormed out of the November 2 meeting, alleging that Sonkar asked personal and indecent questions to her regarding her travels, hotel stay and telephone calls.

She later alleged that she was subjected to a “proverbial vastraharan” in the meeting.

The committee chairperson dismissed opposition members’ claims as a case of unethical conduct aimed at shielding her.

The decision of Ms. Moitra, who appeared before the panel as a subject of enquiry and thus lacked the privileges bestowed on its members, to walk out of the meeting is likely to be taken up critically by the committee in its report.

BJP MP Nishikant Dubey has accused Moitra of asking questions in the Lok Sabha to target the Adani Group at the behest of businessman Darshan Hiranandani in exchange for bribes.

He said it was Mr. Hiranandani who used her login to file questions from different places, mostly Dubai.

Ms. Moitra has admitted that he used her login details but has rejected any pecuniary considerations, asserting that most MPs share their login credentials with others.

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