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Johnson to face Parliamentary probe on “Partygate”

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Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson spins khadi on a charkha or a spinning wheel during his visit to the Sabarmati Ashram, also known as Gandhi Ashram in Ahmedabad, India on Thursday.

UK: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will face a Parliamentary probe after Members of Parliament voted in the House of Commons on Thursday in favour of an investigation into whether the British Prime Minister broke coronavirus restrictions by attending illegal gatherings, the scandal referred to as “Partygate”.

While Johnson was miles away in India on a two-day bilateral visit, MPs shouted “aye” for the Parliament’s Committee of Privileges to investigate whether the UK Prime Minister knowingly misled Parliament.

The vote, tabled by the Opposition Labour Party, passed without the need of a formal vote as the Conservative Party benches were sparsely attended after the ruling party abandoned a planned amendment to delay the motion. Under parliamentary rules, UK Government Ministers are expected to resign for knowingly misleading MPs and correct the record as soon as possible if they inadvertently tell Parliament something false. Labour Leader Keir Starmer accused Conservative MPs of failing to stand up for the values of “honesty and integrity” and said “Britain deserves better” than Johnson.

After over five hours of debate, MPs were asked if they supported launching an investigation into Johnson and as no one opposed the proposal, the motion was approved without a formal vote.

The clash stems from Johnson’s initial statement to the Commons that insisted COVID lockdown rules had been followed at No. 10 Downing Street in the wake of the first partygate allegations. His Tory party colleagues have stood by him, with only a handful voicing their criticism within the Conservative Party.

Therefore, a parliamentary vote on the issue was expected to go in Johnson’s favour but marks yet another dent to his leadership ahead of local council and mayoral elections scheduled for May 5. – INDIA TODAY

Saturday, April 23, 2022 – 01:00

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