Om Birla, K Suresh file nominations for first Lok Sabha Speaker election ever

05:34PM Tue 25 Jun, 2024


BJP MP Om Birla and Congress MP Kodikunnil Suresh on Tuesday filed nominations for the Lok Sabha Speaker election after talks between the ruling National Democratic Alliance and the Opposition's INDIA bloc failed. This is the first time ever that the Lok Sabha will witness an election for the Speaker's post.

The Opposition had agreed to support the government-backed candidate, Om Birla, under the condition that the deputy Speaker must be a member of the INDIA bloc. However, apparently, the two sides couldn't reach an agreement.

Earlier today, union minister and BJP leader Rajnath Singh had reached out to the Opposition. However, minutes before the deadline for the nomination, Congress KC Venugopal, DMK's TR Baalu walked out of Rajnath Singh's office and refused to endorse NDA's nominee.

KC Venugopal later said the government was non-committal on giving the deputy Speaker's post to the Opposition.

K Suresh, according to the INDIA bloc, is the senior most member of parliament. He won the Lok Sabha elections for the eighth time earlier this month.

He is a Dalit leader from Kerala. The Opposition wanted him to be the deputy Speaker.

Earlier, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said the INDIA bloc would support the NDA's choice of candidate if it gave the deputy post to the Opposition.

"The prime minister said that the Opposition should cooperate with the government constructively. The Opposition has clearly stated that they will support the Speaker, however, the convention is that the Opposition should get the deputy Speaker post…Rajnath Singh called Mallikarjun Kharge, seeking support for the Speaker. He is yet to return a call to Kharge ji…PM Modi is saying there should be constructive cooperation, and now our leader is being insulted,” Gandhi said.

"PM Modi does not want any constructive cooperation…We have said that if the convention is followed, we will give full support in the election of the Speaker,” he added.