Parliament Ethics Committee Member Aparajita Sarangi
Mahua Moitra's conduct was "unethical" as she got someone to use her parliament login credentials 47 times (sometimes from Dubai and America), Parliament Ethics Committee Member Aparajita Sarangi told NDTV on the day the Trinamool leader was expelled from parliament over 'cash for query' allegations.
Businessman Darshan Hiranandani had claimed in a signed affidavit that Ms Moitra targeted industrialist Gautam Adani to "malign and embarrass" Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Ms Moitra, 49, was expelled from the Lok Sabha after a discussion on the report of the Ethics Committee in the 'cash for query' that was tabled in the Lower House today.
"Her conduct was unethical. And she has been punished for the same by parliament. It's not like she has been punished by a person or two. The matter went to the parliament standing committee; complainant and defendant were heard. She was given time to put her point forward. When she appeared before the committee, she was very angry and she said a lot of unparliamentary things, even against the committee chairman," Ms Aparajita said.
Detailing the big charge against the MP, she said her parliament login credentials were used by someone else.
"She got someone to use her parliament login credentials 47 times. She did not use it but got someone to use it. Questions were uploaded from Dubai, America, Bangalore and Delhi. It points to improper behaviour. And because of this we suggested her expulsion," said Ms Aparajita.
The proposal, she said, was sent to the Lok Sabha Speaker and then it was tabled today.
"...This House accepts the conclusions of the Committee that MP Mahua Moitra's conduct was immoral and indecent as an MP. So, it is not appropriate for her to continue as an MP...," said Speaker Om Birla.
Ms Moitra maintains that the Ethics committee broke every rule and said a "kangaroo court punished me without evidence".
"Entire case against me based on sharing of login details, but no rules govern this aspect," she said adding that MPs are like conveyor belts to bring questions from general public to parliament.
"No evidence of cash or gift, ethics panel decided to hang me without getting to root of issue," she added.
The Trinamool has described the action against its MP as "over activeness" and a display of the BJP's use of its brute majority in the Lok Sabha.
Ms Aparajita said the MP's expulsion is "unfortunate" and it "does not make us happy".
"We had to do it because parliament's prestige was at stake... that's why we had to do it. And at some level, it is also a lesson for us parliamentarians," she said.
Asked if there is need for a separate investigation, Ms Aparajita said,"
Since parliament, which is supreme, has decided, I don't see a reason for any other agency to probe it."