NDA nominates Om Birla for LS Speaker’s post, parties extend support

New Delhi: BJP MP Om Birla is the NDA nominee for the Lok Sabha Speaker’s post.

The nomination of Birla a two-time MP from Kota, Rajasthan has been supported by ten political parties including Biju Janata Dal (BJD) and YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) will support the candidature of candidate Birla for the post.

The election is scheduled to be held on Wednesday.

“BJD, Shiv Sena, Akali Dal, National People’s Party, Mizo National Front, Lok Janshakti Party, YSRCP, JDU, AIADMK and Apna Dal have given the notice to support Birla’s candidature for the post of Lok Sabha Speaker. I have spoken to Congress leaders K Suresh and Gulab Nabi Azad. They have not signed till now but I think they would not oppose Birla’s candidature,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi told reporters here.

YSRCP and BJD are not allies of the NDA government at the Centre but have extended their support to Birla’s candidature. Congress and N Chandrababu Naidu’s Telugu Desam Party have not given any confirmation to support the candidature of NDA candidate.

Birla, 57, was elected to Lok Sabha after winning elections from Kota parliamentary seat.

He defeated Congress’ Ramnarain Meena by over 2.5 lakh votes from Kota parliamentary seat in the recently concluded general election.

When asked about the development as he left from the residence of BJP National Working President, JP Nadda, Birla said, “I have no information, I had just went to meet the working president as a ‘karyakarta’.”

“It is a very proud and a happy moment for us. We are very thankful to the cabinet for choosing him,” Om Birla’s wife Amita Birla said.

Birla has always been active in politics since the beginning. He was president of the student union in 1979. For 12 years since 1991, he was a key leader in Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha as president at state level first, followed by holding the position of vice-president at the national level.

He won his first Assembly elections contesting from Kota South in 2003. He defeated Shanti Dhariwal from Congress by a margin of 10,101 votes. In the next Assembly elections, he defended his seat with a comfortable margin in 2008.

Before becoming a Member of Parliament, he won his third Assembly election against Pankaj Mehta (Congress) in 2013. During his tenure in 2003-08, he was the Parliamentary Secretary (MoS rank) in Rajasthan Government.

Birla’s political career shot up when he emerged to be the underdog who defeated the incumbent Congress MLA from Kota, Shanti Lal Dhariwal, in 2003.

If elected, he will succeed eight-term MP Sumitra Mahajan as Lok Sabha speaker.

Birla has been MLA from Rajasthan thrice and MP twice.

The development comes a day after the Protem Speaker Virendra Kumar was sworn in by the President and over 300 MPs took an oath during the inaugural session of the 17th Lok Sabha.

Previously, Manohar Joshi of the Shiv Sena was appointed Speaker in his first term in the Lok Sabha in the year 2002. Joshi succeeded Speaker GMC Balayogi of the TDP, who was was appointed Speaker in his second term as MP and who died in a helicopter crash.

Read more