Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Sumitra Mahajan, an eight-time member of Parliament, was on Friday unanimously elected Speaker of the 16th Lok Sabha.
She is the second woman speaker of the Lok Sabha after Meira Kumar, who as speaker presided over the 15th Lok Sabha.
An MP from Indore, Mahajan's name was proposed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and seconded by BJP patriarch LK Advani and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, and many others, cutting across party lines.
Earlier, after the oath-taking of the remaining MPs ended as soon as the house assembled, pro-tem Speaker Kamal Nath took up the motion of election of the speaker. He said he had received 19 notices for election of the speaker.
Then Prime Minister Modi got up to propose Mahajan's name for speaker.
After Mahajan's election, Modi said the election of the speaker has taken place according to the highest traditions of Parliament.
"It is a matter of pride that in the world's biggest democracy, a woman is the speaker. Your guidance will be valuable," the prime minister said in Hindi.
Congratulations to Sumitra Mahajan ji on being unanimously elected Lok Sabha speaker. Her election is a proud moment for our democracy.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 6, 2014
I have known Sumitra ji for years & have seen her dedication & monumental service towards people, be it as a MP or as a Union Minister.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 6, 2014
I wish Sumitra ji the very best in her role as Speaker & assure our complete support & cooperation in the smooth running of the House.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) June 6, 2014