M B Rajesh New speaker of Kerala Assembly

Ruling CPM’s first time legislator, M B Rajesh was elected as the new speaker of the Kerala Legislative Assembly here on Tuesday. He would replace P Sreeramakrishnan, who led the House during the previous LDF government, in the 15th Assembly.

The 50-year-old leader, who made his maiden way into the House by trouncing Congress”s two-time sitting MLA V T Balram in his home turf Thrithala, is the third legislator to adorn the top post in his first stint in the history of the state assembly. Though he was a first entrant into the state assembly, he has 10 years ofexperience as a Member of Parliament.

A member of the CPM state committee, he also served as the former state and national presidents of the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), the youth wing of the Marxist party. Rajesh won 96 of the total 136 votes polled in the 140- member-House while Congress-UDF nominee P C Vishnunath could garner only 40 votes when the election to choose the new speaker was held at the House in the morning.

Three members- K Babu, M Vincent and V Abdurahiman- who were absent due to health reasons, could not cast their votes. Kunnamangalam MLA PTA Rahim kept away from the voting as he was acting as the pro tem speaker. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan was the first one to cast his vote to elect the new speaker when the House proceedings began here in the morning.

After the result was announced, Vijayan and opposition leader V D Satheesan accompanied Rajesh to the chair of speaker. Later, Vijayan wished him all success in delivering his new responsibility in an exemplary manner. “I wish the new speaker could protect the rights of the members of the House and to fulfill the responsibility of the government,” the Chief Minister said. V D Satheesan also congratulated the new speaker and extended him all the support from the opposition side.


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