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Cash-for-Questions Controversy Engulfs Indian Politics: TMC Leader Moitra Denies Allegations

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A political firestorm has erupted in India as BJP MP Nishikant Dubey accused Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Mahua Moitra of receiving cash and gifts in exchange for raising questions in Parliament. Dubey demanded the immediate suspension of Moitra from the House and called for an inquiry into these allegations. Moitra swiftly responded, labelling the charges as “defamatory, false, baseless, and unsupported by any evidence.”

The controversy revolves around a letter Dubey received from a Supreme Court lawyer. This letter allegedly contains “irrefutable evidence of bribes” being exchanged between Moitra and Darshan Hiranandani, the CEO of the real-estate Hiranandani Group. According to Dubey, 50 out of 61 questions asked by Moitra in Parliament recently were focused on the Adani Group, a business conglomerate she has frequently accused of malpractices.

Nishikant Dubey’s letter to LS speaker

In his letter to the Lok Sabha Speaker, Dubey asserted that these allegations against Moitra are reminiscent of the “Cash for Query Scandal” from December 2005. He claims there is no doubt about a “criminal conspiracy” involving Moitra, aimed at advancing the business interests of Darshan Hiranandani through her parliamentary questions.

As a result, the Lok Sabha Speaker forwarded Dubey’s complaint, which pertains to the “bribe for questions” charge against Moitra, to the Ethics Committee of the Lok Sabha, led by BJP member Vinod Kumar Sonkar.

In response, Moitra issued a legal notice to Dubey and advocate Jai Anant Dehadrai over the “defamatory” allegations, accusing them of attempting to tarnish her reputation and pursuing a personal and political vendetta against her.

A recent twist in the ongoing controversy

The matter took a new twist when Darshan Hiranandani submitted a letter to the Ethics Committee of Parliament. In this letter, he claimed that Moitra shared her parliamentary login credentials with him to post questions on her behalf.

Moitra vehemently denied these charges, dismissing the letter’s contents as a “joke.” She questioned the letter’s credibility, citing that it was on plain white paper and not on official letterhead or notarized.

As the controversy deepens, Moitra declared her willingness to cooperate with the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Ethics Committee for any questioning.

Meanwhile, Vinod Sonkar, Chairman of the Ethics Committee of Parliament, stated that he had not yet received Hiranandani’s letter concerning the cash-for-query allegations. Sonkar emphasized the seriousness of the matter and pledged that the committee would examine the evidence presented.

The case has now reached the Delhi High Court, where Moitra’s lawyer withdrew from the case due to a conflict of interest. The next hearing is scheduled for October 31.

 

 

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