Recently several media houses including Zee News and its editor-in-chief Sudhir Chaudhary claimed that a significant amount of content from TMC MP Mahua Moitra’s parliament speech was borrowed from a 2017 article written by Martin Longman in US. The article was written in context to policies applied by Donald Trump government in US.
Moitra during her speech said that outside of Holocaust museum in USA, there’s a poster on which early signs of fascism are written. She then went on to read out seven points out of that.
Later some media houses including Zee News pointed how that specific part of Moitra’s speech was perhaps influenced by Martin Longman article and claimed it to be an act of plagiarism.
On the other hand, Moitra in her clarification said that she only referred to the early signs of fascism originally written by Sr Lawrence W Brit, which is, or was, also featured in a poster outside Holocaust museum, and that she mentioned about its original source during the speech.
Meanwhile, Martin Longman in US probably got a bit carried away by the undeserving focus that he suddenly was getting from Indian media. In a tweet, he said that a politician in India is being falsely accused of plagiarising him and then went on to abuse Right wingers, saying that they are same everywhere.
Following this statement from Longman, Moitra also in a tweet used the same slang word while retweeting a tweet from Zee News editor Sudhir Chaudhary.
The debate on whether Moitra really copied from Martin Longman’s article or not is a different matter but one may ask if using such language is fitting for a person who is member of India’s parliament.
Mahua Moitra has all the rights to counter whatever allegations have been made against her. There’s nothing wrong in it, instead it is her right as a citizen of India. However was it necessary for her to use slang words and generalise people of a certain ideology, being a member of parliament? Martin Longman is a journalist, he can use whatever language he wants to, but a different level of decorum is expected from a member of Indian parliament.