Birla vs Suresh: Contest for Lok Sabha Speaker

Om Birla and Kodikunnil Suresh filed their nominations for Speaker post. Traditionally, the Speaker is chosen through consensus between the ruling party and the Opposition.
Birla vs Suresh: Contest for Lok Sabha Speaker

For the first time in Independent India's history, Om Birla and Kodikunnil Suresh filed their nominations on June 26 for the Lok Sabha Speaker election, representing the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) and INDIA bloc, respectively. Traditionally, the Speaker was chosen through consensus between the ruling party and the Opposition. However, this year, the INDIA bloc disrupted this tradition by demanding the deputy Speaker post in exchange for supporting the NDA candidate.

Om Birla, the NDA candidate, was elected to the 16th Lok Sabha after winning from Kota in Rajasthan. He has served on the Standing Committee on Energy, the Committee on Petitions, and the Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. Birla was re-elected in the 17th Lok Sabha in 2019 and served as the Speaker of the lower House. Returning to the Lok Sabha for the third time from Kota, Birla could become the first person to hold the Speaker post for two terms in 25 years. Birla has been active in politics since his student days, serving as the state unit president of the Bhartiya Yuva Morcha in 1991 and as vice president at the national level.

Kodikunnil Suresh, the Opposition candidate from the INDIA bloc, is an eight-time MP from Kerala and the longest-serving Lok Sabha MP. Suresh was first elected to the Lok Sabha in 1989 and subsequently won in 1991, 1996, and 1999 from the Adoor constituency, serving four consecutive terms. He won his eighth Lok Sabha election from Mavelikkara (Kerala) in 2024, representing the seat four times. Suresh has served as the working president of the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) and was the chief whip of the Congress Parliamentary Party in the 17th Lok Sabha.

Following his nomination, Suresh emphasized that the election is not about winning or losing but about maintaining the convention where the Speaker comes from the ruling party, and the Deputy Speaker comes from the Opposition.

This year's election marks a significant departure from tradition, highlighting the growing tensions and political maneuvering between the ruling NDA and the INDIA bloc. The outcome of this election could set a precedent for future Lok Sabha Speaker selections.

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