Rendering its ire over corruption a sham, the Parliament is planning to pardon the 11 Members of Parliament (MP) suspended for taking cash to asking questions in the Parliament. The Speaker Somnath Chatterjee had
acrimoniously defended his decision to suspend these MPs and had refused to respond to a Supreme Court (SC) “show-cause” notice claiming that the Parliament is supreme and that the decisions of the house is “non-justiciable.”
It is not clear what is prompting this pardon move but other MPs being prosecuted for embezzlement and gross misdemeanor are suspected to be behind the move to issue a pardon. Specifically, Railways Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav, who along with his wife is being investigated for fraud and embezzlement, has been a vocal advocate. He has been arguing that if an Office of Profit (OOP) Bill could be passed to benefit a few MPs, there should be no qualms to pardon these MPs who have committed a relatively minor crime.
MPs are increasingly worried about the reach of news channels that are able to trap politicians in embarrassing situations. Last week, one such sting caught the Federal Minister of State for Home talking to a
Uttar Pradesh (UP) mafia don. Earlier, another such conversation trapped UP Chief Minister Maulayam Singh Yadav
talking to Samajwadi Party (SP) leader and MP Amar Singh about the removal of a High Court judge. In either case, instead of questioning the morality, legality, and propriety of both calls and the content, politicians across party lines have chastised the news channel that trapped the politicians.