Who is Mahua Moitra? What is the relevance of her recent parliamentary speech?
It is not the first time, we are seeing the Trinamool Congress Party (TMC) member, Mahua Moitra leading a speech with arguments that are relevant and quite less talked about. Mahua has significantly made many speeches for the people and democratic rights of the citizens of the country, but this time, this speech, that she has made on 8 February 2020 has a real, special audacity in it. The woman used the vigour and sheer courage to raise questions against the cowardice of the government in the name of courage, that too in the face of the present members of the government.
But before we talk about her speech, just a background of who she is?
Mahua Moitra, an Indian politician and MP in the 17th Lok Sabha of Krishnanagar, West Bengal, contested and secured a seat in the 2019 Indian general election as the party candidate of the All India Trinamool Congress (AITC). Before entering politics, she was an investment banker. Moitra is a graduate in Economics and Mathematics from Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley in Massachusetts, United States. Moitra served the West Bengal Legislative Assembly representing Karimpur from 2016 to 2019 and as the Secretary-General and National Speaker of the AITC for the past few years.
This speech of Moitra is perhaps a capsule of all the instances, that perhaps took place in the last year and are claiming instances of how the government is supported by hatred, bigotry, injustice, and misconduct, and calls it courage in the face of people. In her opening words, she marks how the present government claims to be doing things that no other government has thought of doing, of how it has achieved what no government has thought of achieving; and to that, she said what is happening now didn’t ever happen because no government felt it right to do it.
She took the other members present in the parliament will all of what had happened in the past year. Starting from the start, last year, when the government chooses to introduce citizenship to minorities in an effort to show their concerns towards Hindu minorities, she questioned why is the government now delaying in releasing the guidelines for the same. Is the delay not going to hamper the minorities now? Following it, she questions how the government identifies courage in introducing the nationwide lockdown at a mere notice of four hours, increasing the insecurities of already insecure people.
The government has spent less than 2% on social transfers which are in fact highly incompetent to other countries. She even highlighted the fact that a whole ministry (i.e. Ministry of External Affairs) was dedicated to respond to a social media post by two social media influencers while no single ministry is deputed to look out the serious crisis issues and the basic needs of farmers who have been protesting. And of course, in the name of courage government has introduced farm laws that no farmer thinks are in favour of them.
Well, why was this speech important is primarily for the fact that she came up with questions, others didn’t care to raise, for either they don’t feel affected by it or shy away to raise their voices. But Moitra, not only strongly opposed the motion of the house but confidently used her oration skills to put her arguments, one by one, so beautifully that even the speaker deferred to stop her while she was making her arguments.
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