Delhi: Mahua Moitra’s Expulsion: Unanswered Questions and Controversial Consequences.
Being seen as a woman who has been vengefully targeted by the BJP is only likely to bolster Moitra’s popularity.
The parliamentary committee on ethics relied heavily on unproven allegations made by industrialist Darshan Hiranandani and Moitra’s estranged partner. These allegations were the foundation of the committee’s findings, disregarding the absence of concrete evidence. By failing to question Hiranandani and allowing Moitra to cross-examine him, the committee missed an opportunity to ensure a fair and unbiased investigation.
The outcome did not surprise anybody. The parliamentary committee on ethics that had probed the allegation of cash-for-questions against Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra had made it known last month that it had found her guilty as charged and had recommended her expulsion from the Lok Sabha. On 8 December, four days after Parliament opened for the winter session, she was duly expelled by a majority voice vote, carried by the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) brute strength in the lower House.
It was a swift case of game, set and match.
Moitra was not given a chance to speak in Parliament. The ethics committee did not question industrialist Darshan Hiranandani, who claimed that she had taken favours from him allegedly for posing questions about controversial business magnate Gautam Adani. Nor did it allow her to cross-question him, which legal experts say, was her right under the circumstances.
Essentially, it based its case on the unproven allegations of two people — Hiranandani and Moitra’s ex-partner with whom she had a bitter falling out.
One of the key allegations against Moitra was her alleged acceptance of favors from industrialist Darshan Hiranandani in return for posing questions about controversial business magnate Gautam Adani. However, without a thorough examination of the evidence and the opportunity for Moitra to respond, the legitimacy of these allegations remains questionable. The committee’s decision to base their findings on such unverified claims raises concerns about their impartiality.