Upholding ethical standards in Parliament: Expelling Mahua Moitra

| Updated: 14 November, 2023 12:00 pm IST

Mahua Moitra, the TMC MP found guilty of taking bribes and sharing her official login credentials with a Dubai-based businessman, which is a grave offence, is deserving of the highest punishment. The Lok Sabha Ethics Committee’s recommendation to expel her from the House is appreciative and any Parliamentarian whose code of conduct has been unscrupulous deserves to be expelled as an example for all.

The Lok Sabha Ethics Committee, chaired by BJP MP Vinod Kumar Sonkar, voted 6:4 to adopt a report recommending the expulsion of Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra from the Lok Sabha. The report alleges that Moitra accepted cash and gifts from businessman Darshan Hiranandani in exchange for asking questions in the Lok Sabha, an allegation that Moitra denies. The Committee rejected Moitra’s request to summon Hiranandani and cross-examine him and Supreme Court lawyer Jai Anant Dehadrai, who supported the allegation.

Moitra’s conduct is not only unethical but also a breach of parliamentary privilege, a contempt of the House, and a threat to national security as well as parliamentary functioning. She has violated the oath of office and secrecy that she took as a member of Parliament, betraying the trust and confidence of the people who elected her. She has abused her position and power for personal gain, compromising the integrity and dignity of the parliament. Her admission to receiving gifts and demanding favours from the businessman, who could access her Members’ Portal and post parliamentary questions at will, is inexcusable.

Critics argue that Moitra’s expulsion is too harsh and that she should be given a chance to defend herself and prove her innocence. They claim that the committee is biased and motivated by political vendetta. However, in light of the evidence examined and the testimony of the businessman, the committee has diligently established Moitra’s acceptance of illegal gratification and the sharing of official login credentials. It has acted in accordance with the provisions of the Information Technology Act, of 2000, charging her and the businessman with computer-related offences.

Moitra’s expulsion is neither too harsh nor unwarranted. It is an appropriate and necessary step, given the gravity and implications of her offence. Her expulsion will serve as both punishment for her crime and a deterrent to others who might contemplate similar corrupt and irresponsible behaviour. Upholding ethical standards in Parliament is essential to maintain public trust and confidence in our democratic institutions. Expelling Moitra is a clear message that unethical conduct will not be tolerated.

Moitra’s expulsion will demonstrate that our democracy values honesty, integrity, and accountability. It will restore the faith and respect of the people in the Parliament and its functioning, reinforcing the belief that our representatives are committed to serving the nation with dedication. The Speaker of the Lok Sabha should accept the committee’s report and take the necessary action against Moitra. People should reject such politicians and elect honest and responsible representatives who will serve the nation and the people with dedication and integrity. Upholding ethical standards in our democratic institutions is the path to a brighter and more trustworthy future for our nation.

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