Congress renews campaign, seeks Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker post

Party leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury writes to Speaker urging him to adhere to constitutional mandate

Published - September 09, 2020 09:47 pm IST - New Delhi

Leader of the Congress party in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury. File

Leader of the Congress party in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury. File

With the Rajya Sabha poised to elect the Deputy Chairman, the Congress renewed its campaign seeking the Deputy Speaker’s position in the Lok Sabha. Congress’s floor leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, in a letter to Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, urged him to adhere to the constitutional mandate.

Also read: NDA likely to repeat Harivansh for RS Deputy Chairman post

The Lok Sabha has not had a Deputy Speaker for the last 15 months. Instead, a panel of MPs has been assisting the Speaker. In contrast, within a couple of months after the vacancy arose, the process of electing the Deputy Chairman has begun in the Rajya Sabha. Former Deputy Chairman and JD(U) MP Harivansh filed his nomination papers on Wednesday for a re-election. The Congress is also trying to bring together the opposition parties to field a joint candidate, though the opposition does not have the requisite numbers.

YSRCP declines

Soon after the 2019 general elections, the government had made some effort to fill the position. It had approached the YSR Congress Party, which turned down the offer since it would have been difficult to align its protest against the government for not according special status to Andhra Pradesh while occupying the post.

Also read: Upcoming Parliament session's plan ready

Mr. Chowdhury, in his letter to Mr. Birla, said that according to the constitutional mandate the seat of the Deputy Speaker should be filled either by election or consensus after a new Lok Sabha is constituted. He said that by convention the post of the Deputy Speaker is offered to the opposition party. “Already a year has elapsed but still the Lok Sabha is deprived of having a Deputy Speaker, as if it appears an one-horn chair of the Lower House, meanwhile, the Rajya Sabha has been on the verge of electing the Deputy Chairman,” he wrote.

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