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Om Birla unanimously elected as the speaker of Lok Sabha

Once declared elected, as per convention, PM and leader of Cong in House, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, escorted Om Birla to the Speaker’s Chair.

ET Bureau|
Updated: Jun 20, 2019, 07.34 AM IST
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Om Birla elected unanimously as Speaker of Lok Sabha
Om Birla elected unanimously as Speaker of Lok Sabha
NEW DELHI: Om Birla, the secondterm BJP MP from Kota, Rajasthan, was unanimously elected Speaker of the 17th Lok Sabha on Wednesday, with all major political parties moving a motion or seconding it to choose him for the post.

More than 13 motions were moved in Birla’s favour. Pro tem Speaker Virendra Kumar read out the motion moved by PM Modi and seconded by defence minister Rajnath Singh that said: “That, Om Birla, a member of this House, be chosen as the Speaker of this House.”

Once declared elected, as per the convention, the PM and leader of the Congress in the House, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, escorted Birla to the Speaker’s chair.

In his welcome speech, Modi hailed Birla as a politician who has always worked for society, be it helping the victims of earthquake in Kutch or flash floods in Kedarnath. The PM said Birla has provided food to the needy through his Prasadam scheme in Kota and woollen blankets to the poor.

Most members emphasised that the Speaker should be impartial while handling the proceedings. The opposition underlined that the practice of scrutiny of bills by standing committees that had declined in the last Lok Sabha should be encouraged and restored.

Chowdhury read out a couplet wishing a great future for Birla and insisted that he should be impartial while conducting proceedings. The Congress leader said shouting of ‘Jai Shri Ram’ and ‘Allah-o-Akbar’ during oath-taking wasn’t proper.

TR Baalu (DMK), Sudip Bandyopadhyay (TMC), Arvind Sawant (Shiv Sena), Pinaki Misra (BJD), Chirag Paswan (LJP), Supriya Sule (NCP), Farooq Abdullah (NC), Asaduddin Owaisi (AIMIM) were among those who spoke a few words to welcome Birla’s elevation.

Misra lamented that the practice of sending bills to standing committees for scrutiny, which is important, had dwindled during 2014-19. Owaisi said Birla might have sat on the right (also a reference to his ideology) all along but now he should give equal opportunity to those on the left.

Birla thanked members for their kind words. He said whatever the ideology of the members, all are in the Lok Sabha with the purpose of making the country better. Birla assured that all the parties irrespective of their strength will get due importance, adding he will conduct the House in an impartial manner.

Birla emphasised that members should ask questions that are relevant nationally and expressed hope that the government will deal with the questions responsibly and sensitively.

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