Odisha Sun Times Bureau:
New Delhi/Bhubaneswar, Dec 27:
Utkal Bharat party President and former Odisha MP Kharavela Swain met Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Ethics Committee chairman L K Advani and demanded stringent action against BJD’s Puri MP Pinaki Mishra in the cash for coverage incident on November 12.
Swain urged Mahajan and Advani to initiate an inquiry into the matter in which chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Urban Development Pinaki Mishra had distributed cash to journalists at a press conferences held at Puri and Bhubaneswar. The cash were inserted in the kit given to media persons.
Swain apprised Mahajan and Advani that Pinaki had presided over the press conferences in his capacity as chairman of Parliament’s standing committee. However, no other member from the Standing Committee was present at the event. In both the events, only local BJD legislators were present, he pointed out.
To build a strong case against the BJD MP, Swain showed media reports, both electronic and print, to Mahajan and Advani of the incident which was covered by the media media at state as well as national level.
It may be recalled here that the incident had evoked sharp reactions from Opposition parties in Odisha. They had condemned the incident accusing the ruling BJD of bribing the Fourth Estate.
Outraged by this, the entire media had confronted the MP and walked out in protest. A police complaint was lodged in this regard demanding action against Mishra.
Though Mishra had feigned ignorance over the contents in the media kit, a similar act was repeated at Bhubaneswar where currency notes were given to the media in a press kit, noted Swain.
An inquiry headed by Lok Sabha Secretary General has been ordered by Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, Swain informed.