The Parliamentary ethics committee issued notice to five Trinamool Congress (TMC) MP’s who were caught on Narada News Sting X Files video accepting bribes to favor a company. The panel led by BJP veteran LK Advani served the notice to the five TMC MPs who were seen accepting bundles of cash, seeking an explanation from them.
Narada News released the X Files sting video that showed 11 TMC leaders accepting bribes from Editor in Chief, Mathew Samuel, who was posing as a representative of a fictitious company. The sting video created an uproar in West Bengal resulting in calls for resignation of CM Mamata Banerjee. TMC had initially said the video was doctored. Facing the heat, TMC finally admitted that the party will conduct an internal inquiry over the sting. They however continue to maintain that it was the ploy of the opposition parties to defeat TMC in the assembly polls.
Samuel who shot the entire footage himself handed over the unedited footage to Ravinder Garimellla, the Joint Secretary of Lok Sabha Secretariat.
The Calcutta High Court had earlier asked Narada News to submit the raw footage for examination. Samuel had cited his inability to appear personally and present the tapes, citing security reasons. Later the court directed him to hand over the footage and the recording device to a three member committee for verification of its authenticity.
The opposition parties cornered the TMC after Narada News published the unedited raw footage. After releasing the sting video at Delhi during a press conference, Narada News has published eight unedited videos featuring TMC leaders accepting bribes. These videos have revealed a lot more at times, like the involvement of Madan Mitra in the suicide of Piyali Mukherjee.
The 15-member Lok Sabha ethics committee has eight members from the BJP, including Advani, and one each from the Congress, Shiv Sena, Akali Dal, BJD, TDP and the AIADMK. One slot is vacant.