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No evidence to back cash-for-question charge, says Moitra, hits out at Adani FPIs

New Delhi: Trinamool Congress (TMC) MP Mahua Moitra on Saturday said the BJP’s ‘cash-for-questions’ allegation against her has ‘failed’ as there is no evidence to back it and questioned how ‘dodgy FPI owned Adani’ got the clearance to buy ports and airports.

In a post on X, Moitra said: ‘First BJP said ‘Cash for Questions’. That failed since NO evidence to back fake allegation. Now it is ‘National Security’.’ ‘Real? Not of Q&A portal that 10 people in each MP team access daily — it is how dodgy FPI owned Adani gets MHA clearance to buy our ports and airports!’ she said, without elaborating any further.

Moitra’s post came a day after Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Nishikant Dubey, who levelled the ‘cash-for-questions’ allegation against her, said in a post on X that sharing the parliamentary portal login details with anyone is a violation of the agreement with the government body (NIC) managing the portal and is a security risk.

The TMC MP continued her attack on the business group led by Gautam Adani. She had recently shared a post on X, saying unknown foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) owning shares of the Adani Group were a bigger national security concern and not an email ID.

Moitra has been at the centre of a political storm after Dubey wrote to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla citing a letter he received from advocate Jai Anant Dehadrai, who is the former partner of the TMC leader.

The Ethics Committee of the Lok Sabha is looking into the complaint alleging that Moitra took bribes from businessman Darshan Hiranandani to target the Adani Group.

Dubey and Dehadrai gave their ‘oral evidence’ to the panel on Thursday.

Moitra has dismissed the charges against her while admitting, in remarks to the media, that she shared her parliamentary portal login details with Hiranandani in connection with typing questions on her behalf as he has been a friend for long.

She has, however, asserted that it was only meant to help her and rejected any quid pro quo.

The TMC MP has claimed that the Adani Group is behind the ‘bogus’ charges due to her strident criticism of the business conglomerate and the government’s alleged support to it.

Dubey, a leading BJP voice in the Lok Sabha in targeting the opposition over various issues, claimed on Saturday that Hiranandani and Moita continue to remain in touch and that attempts are being made to influence witnesses.

Hiranandani had submitted an affidavit admitting to the allegations that he bribed Moitra to target the Adani Group and also, Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Moitra has alleged that the businessman filed the affidavit under coercion.

In her letter to the committee on Friday, she said: ‘I wish to place on record that any enquiry without the oral evidence of Shri Hiranandani will be incomplete, unfair and akin to holding a proverbial ‘kangaroo court’ and that he too will need to be called to depose before the committee before it prepares its final report.’

(Published 29 October 2023, 01:04 IST)

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