Trinamool, CPI-M members clash in Rajya Sabha over sting

New Delhi, March 16 (IANS) The Rajya Sabha on Wednesday witnessed acrimonious scenes during the zero hour over a sting operation in West Bengal as members from the Trinamool Congress and the Communist Party of India-Marxist exchanged heated words.

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Urging the government to immediately order a probe into the matter, CPI-M general secretary Sitaram Yechury said, “This is a scam of the highest order.”

He said perhaps there was a “match-fixing” between the government and the Trinamool Congress on the issue.

“If the government is not responding, the chair has to protect the dignity of the house and order a house probe,” the CPI-M member said.

“When Tehelka tapes came (during the Vajpayee government), their leader (Mamata Banerjee) and their party had walked out of the BJP government,” Yechury said.

A sting operation by a news portal allegedly showed several Trinamool Congress leaders accepting money in return for lobbying for a private firm.

Pushed to the wall on the sting controversy both in parliament and outside, the Trinamool Congress questioned the credibility of the video footage and hinted that foreign money was involved in creating these videos.

Raising the issue in the Rajya Sabha during zero hour, party member Derek O’Brien said, “Let us not judge the credibility of the video; let’s judge the source of the video.”

He said that “my issue is much bigger”, and added that the day what he dubbed as the “so-called” sting operation video was released, the portal company had made five telephone calls to Dubai.

As the Trinamool and Left members clashed, some CPI-M members trooped into the well of the house.

Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien told agitating Trinamool members, “What’s the point fighting when he (Yechury) is only demanding an investigation! What is your objection over it?”

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