Mahua Moitra, MP of the Trinamool Congress, faces a motion of privilege over her parliamentary remarks on a former Chief Justice of India, in an apparent rethink after the government previously suggested that it would not take any action.
After Mahua Moitra posted short videos on Wednesday of her inflammatory statements in the Lok Sabha, sources claim the ruling BJP decided to continue with the move. A demand for a privilege motion was lodged by PP Chowdhary, a former Minister of State for Justice. Later, Nishant Dubey, another BJP MP, also did so.
Mahua Moitra posted on Twitter that warnings and threats of violence will not silence her.
Union Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said on Monday that Mahua Moitra must face repercussions for her comments to threaten former Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, who has since been removed.
“Raising the issue of the Ram Mandir judgment (the Ayodhya temple-mosque verdict) and bringing the then Chief Justice and other things, it’s a serious matter and we’re thinking of taking appropriate measures,” Mr. Joshi was quoted.
He mentioned a provision towards bringing up members, “the conduct of persons in high authority unless the discussion is based on a substantive motion drawn in proper terms.”
Comments By Mahua:
The same day, Mahua Moitra placed out a rebellious tweet. “It would be a privilege indeed if a breach of privilege motion is initiated against me for speaking the truth during India’s darkest hour,” she posted. On reports on Tuesday that the government had decided not to move against her, she wrote: “What? No action? Just when I was gearing up to fight the good fight!”
Comments by Ms. Moitra, which again caused controversy on Monday in the Lok Sabha, were expunged. “These remarks are against the judiciary,” the Speaker’s office said.
Ms. Moitra also said in a fiery speech, referring to the clampdown on farmers’ protests, that “India is in a state of undeclared emergency” She criticized the government for trying to make “a cottage industry” of propaganda and fake news. She went on to criticize the courts and the press for the country’s “failing”.
“Cowards who hide behind the false bravado of authority, of power, of hate, of bigotry, of untruths and dare to call it courage. After all this, the government has turned propaganda and misinformation into a cottage industry, whose biggest success is recasting of cowardice like courage,” she said.