New Chhattisgarh speaker, legislators take oath (Lead, Superseding earlier story)

January 5th, 2009 - 7:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata PartyRaipur, Jan 5 (IANS) Dharamlal Kaushik of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was elected speaker as all newly elected Chhattisgarh legislators took the oath of office during the maiden sitting of the third assembly here Monday.Kaushik, an influential leader of the Other Backward Classes (OBCs), won the Bilha assembly seat in Bilaspur district in the November assembly polls. He was elected speaker unopposed amid desk-thumping and cheers by legislators of both the ruling party and the opposition Congress and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).

The BJP won 50 seats in the 90-member assembly, while the Congress and the BSP bagged 38 and two seats respectively in the two-phase assembly polls held Nov 14 and Nov 20. The election results were declared Dec 8.

Chief Minister Raman Singh and Leader of Opposition Ravindra Chaubey hailed Kaushik’s election as speaker and they escorted him to the speaker’s chair.

As the house met at noon, Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan administered oath of office as pro-tem speaker to Bodhram Kanwar, one of the senior most members of the house, elected for the seventh time from Katghora seat in Korba district.

Kanwar administered the oath to new legislators, including Raman Singh, Chaubey and 11 cabinet ministers.

Wheelchair-bound Congress leader and Chhattisgarh’s first chief minister Ajit Jogi, who was elected from Marwahi in Bilaspur district, also took oath as member of the house.

Jogi last week vacated his Lok Sabha seat from Mahasamund that he won in the 2004 polls. His wife Renu Jogi, who retained her Kota seat in the assembly elections, also took oath.

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