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CBI Registers FIR Against TMC Leader Mahua Moitra In Cash-for-query Case On Lokpal’s Direction

Lok Sabha had expelled Moitra in December last year for "unethical conduct". (Photo: PTI file)

Lok Sabha had expelled Moitra in December last year for “unethical conduct”. (Photo: PTI file)

The Lokpal has issued the directions to the CBI after receiving findings of the agency’s preliminary inquiry into allegations made by BJP Lok Sabha member Nishikant Dubey against Moitra

The CBI on Thursday registered an FIR against former Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra in the cash-for-query case, officials said. The CBI action came on the direction of anti-corruption ombudsman Lokpal.

The Lokpal has issued the directions to the CBI after receiving findings of the agency’s preliminary inquiry into allegations made by BJP Lok Sabha member Nishikant Dubey against Moitra.

The Lokpal had directed the Central Bureau of Investigation to submit its findings in six months before it after investigating all aspects of the complaints against her in the matter. Lok Sabha had expelled Moitra in December last year for “unethical conduct”.

The former MP has challenged her expulsion in the Supreme Court and will again be on the hustings during the general elections as the TMC’s candidate from the Krishnanagar Lok Sabha seat in West Bengal. Dubey has alleged that Moitra asked questions in Lok Sabha in exchange for cash and gifts from Dubai-based businessman Darshan Hiranandani to mount an attack on industrialist Gautam Adani and Prime Minister Narendra Modi among others.

Moitra has denied all charges. The Lokpal found that “allegations levelled against the RPS (Respondent Public Servant), most of which are supported by cogent evidence, are extremely serious in nature, especially in view of the position held by her.” “Therefore, in our considered opinion, a deeper probe is required to establish the truth. This is vital in view of the position and status held by the RPS at the relevant point of time,” said the order of the Lokpal bench, comprising Justice Abhilasha Kumari (judicial member) and members Archana Ramasundaram and Mahender Singh.

A public servant is bound to exercise probity in the discharge of his or her duties whatever be the position held, it said. “The responsibility and burden are heavier on the shoulders of a public representative. Corruption is a malaise that is adversely affecting the legislative, administrative, social and economic functioning of this democratic country,” the order said.

Accordingly, “we direct the CBI…to investigate all aspects of the allegations made in the complaint, and submit a copy of the investigation report within a period of six months from the date of receipt of this order,” the order said. The CBI will file monthly reports regarding the status of the investigation, it added.

(With PTI inputs)

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