Lok Sabha Speaker election: All eyes on BJP as INDIA bloc reaches out to TDP, JD(U) for hot post

Speculation mounts over Lok Sabha Speaker's election scheduled for June 26 after the 18th Lok Sabha's first session.

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Updated17 Jun 2024, 09:50 AM IST
New Delhi, India - June 09, 2024: Janata Dal (United) Leader Nitish Kumar seen along Telugu Desam Party (TDP) Leader, N. Chandrababu Naidu during oath ceremony of  Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister of India. (Photo by Ajay Aggarwal/ Hindustan Times)
New Delhi, India - June 09, 2024: Janata Dal (United) Leader Nitish Kumar seen along Telugu Desam Party (TDP) Leader, N. Chandrababu Naidu during oath ceremony of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister of India. (Photo by Ajay Aggarwal/ Hindustan Times)(Hindustan Times)

With the Lok Sabha Speaker's election drawing near, all attention is focused on the seat of ‘Speaker’, sparking widespread speculation about who will assume the coveted role next.

The election for the Speaker’s post is scheduled for June 26, two days after the commencement of the first session of the 18th Lok Sabha.

Also Read: INDIA bloc may contest for Lok Sabha Speaker’s post if…

INDIA bloc of the Opposition emphasized that the Lok Sabha Speaker's post should be allocated to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)'s National Democratic Alliance (NDA) partners – the Janata Dal (United) and the Telugu Desam Party (TDP).

With 240 Lok Sabha seats, the BJP fell 32 seats short of the majority mark. N. Chandrababu Naidu and Nitish Kumar, who won 16 and 12 Lok Sabha seats respectively, emerged as crucial figures in the formation of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's third government, playing pivotal roles as ‘kingmakers’.

What's up with NDA alliance?

A meeting was scheduled at the residence of Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, where BJP Chief JP Nadda was also present, Aaj Tak reported.

The report noted that the meeting, held ahead of the first session of the 18th Lok Sabha, reportedly discussed strategies to garner support from various opposition parties for the NDA candidate for Speaker and Deputy Speaker.

What did the INDIA bloc say?

Opposition parties have expressed strong interest in the Speaker's position after a long interval of ten years, indicating their readiness to assert pressure if they are not given the Deputy Speaker's position.

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) recently said that TDP and JD(U) should decide that the Lok Sabha Speaker should be from one of the parties as it would be in the “interest of the Constitution and democracy.”

Also Read: 'If Chandrababu Naidu doesn't get Lok Sabha Speaker post, INDIA bloc will...': Sanjay Raut reveals BIG plan

Meanwhile, Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Sanjay Raut said on Sunday that all partners of the opposition INDIA bloc will try to ensure support for the ruling ally TDP if it fields a candidate for the Lok Sabha speaker's election, PTI reported.

“We have the experience that BJP betrays the people who support it,” Sanjay Raut claimed.

“I hear the TDP wants to field its candidate. If that happens, INDIA bloc partners will discuss the issue and will try to ensure that all the INDIA alliance partners extend support to the TDP,” he said.

What are the responses of ‘kingmakers’?

While TDP national spokesperson Pattabhi Ram Kommareddy told The Indian Express that the candidate must be jointly decided by NDA partners, JD(U) leader KC Tyagi has indicated that it will support the candidate nominated by the BJP, showing discord among the NDA members.

Also Read: Modi 3.0 Cabinet: Who will be the next Lok Sabha Speaker?

“Whatever decision the BJP takes, we will support it,” JD(U) national general secretary K C Tyagi told The Indian Express, adding, “It is a convention that the largest party in the ruling coalition takes a call on the Speaker.”

What do past records say?

During the tenure of the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government from 1998 to 1999, led by the BJP-led NDA coalition comprising 19 parties, TDP MP GMC Balayogi served as the Speaker. In 1999, after thirteen months in power, the government faced a trust vote following the withdrawal of support by the AIADMK led by J Jayalalithaa.

Despite efforts to retain support, the government lost the vote by a single vote margin.

Speaker Balayogi allowed Odisha's Chief Minister Giridhar Gamang, who had recently become an MP while holding the CM's office, to participate in the voting, contributing to the government's defeat.

“Those invoking 1998-1999 must understand that in that government there were a dozen parties. That is not the case here,” Tyagi told Indian Express.

What does Om Birla think?

In the previous government, Om Birla from Kota held the position of Speaker, but the current government has yet to finalize who will occupy the chair.

However, Birla said that political parties take such decisions and he has no role in it, ANI reported.

“All these decisions are taken by political parties. These decisions cannot be taken by me,” Birla said.

When asked if a Deputy Speaker would be appointed, Birla said the government and the political parties would make the decision.

The Deputy Speaker's position, a constitutional role, remained unfilled during the 17th Lok Sabha. Previously, in the 16th Lok Sabha, AIADMK MP M. Thambidurai held the role.

Indian Express reported citing BJP sources that post of the Deputy Speaker might be a member from one of the NDA parties this time.

(With inputs from agencies)

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First Published:17 Jun 2024, 09:50 AM IST
HomePoliticsNewsLok Sabha Speaker election: All eyes on BJP as INDIA bloc reaches out to TDP, JD(U) for hot post

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