Om Birla, BJP’s choice for LS Speaker

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on June 18, 2019 Published on June 18, 2019

A photo of BJP MP Om Birla   -  Twitter/ @ombirlakota

Opposition yet to name nominee

In a surprise move, the BJP on Tuesday named two-term MP Om Birla as the ruling coalition’s nominee for the Lok Sabha Speaker’s post.

Till late Tuesday afternoon, no name had been proposed by the Opposition. The election is scheduled for Wednesday and Tuesday was the last day for filing nominations.

In any case, the NDA with its clear majority in the Lower House was set to elect the 56-year-old MP — from the Kota-Bundi Parliamentary seat in Rajasthan — as the Speaker.

Parties in support

A notice had been given to the Lok Sabha Secretariat by the BJP, proposing Birla for the post and bringing a motion for his election. Ten separate notices have been given to the Lok Sabha Secretariat by different NDA allies. Parties such as the AIADMK, the YSR Congress Party and the Biju Janata Dal are also supporting Birla’s nomination. Prime Minister Narendra Modi proposed Om Birla’s name for the post, party sources said.

The convention has been to pick among the more senior Members as the Speaker. The previous Speaker, Sumitra Mahajan, had been an MP for eight terms. Before her, Speaker Meira Kumar was a five-term MP and Somnath Chatterjee was a nine-term MP. However, there have been instances when first-time and second-time MPs were elected to the chair.

Manohar Joshi, who was elected as Lok Sabha speaker in 2002, was then a first-time MP. He had succeeded GMC Balayogi, a second-time MP who died in a helicopter crash.

The Election of the Speaker will be conducted by the pro tem Speaker through a motion in the House. After the election, the Speaker is led to the Chair by the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition and the pro tem Speaker vacates the Chair. The pro tem Speaker is sworn in by the President. He or she conducts the business, including the election of the Speaker, and the House is adjourned. The President addresses the House the next day.

Chronology of events

The first session of the 17Lok Sabha has been fixed with the summoning of the House approved by the Union Cabinet for June 17. The Session is expected to conclude on July 26. The Rajya Sabha will be convened on June 20.

The President will be requested to address both the Houses of Parliament assembled together in the Central Hall of Parliament on June 20 at 11 am in terms of article 87(1) of the Constitution. The election of the Speaker will take place the day before, on June 19.

The Union Budget for 2019-20 will be presented in the Lok Sabha on Friday, July 5, 2019 at 11.00 am.

Published on June 18, 2019
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