Odishatv Bureau

BJD leader and legislator from Bhanjanagar Bikram Keshari Arukh was elected unopposed as Speaker of the Odisha Legislative Assembly at a special session of the Assembly on Monday.  He became the 21st Speaker of the State Assembly.

Deputy Speaker Rajanikant Singh declared Arukh as the Speaker of the house. Arukh had earlier worked as the chief whip of the ruling party. He got elected from Bhanjangar for six times.

Earlier, Arukh had resigned from his post during the reshuffle of the cabinet and submitted his resignation to Deputy Speaker Rajani Kant Singh. Arukha on June 10 filed nomination for the post of Speaker and submitted the nomination papers before Dasharathi Satapathy, Secretary of the Odisha Legislative Assembly.

In support of the motion, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said, “Sri Bikram Keshari Arukh has been a member of this August House since 1995. He represents Bhanjanagar Assembly seat. Arukh, being the distinct member of this House, highlighted the problems and requirement of people he represents. He is an advocate by profession. He has deep concern for weaker section of the society as an advocate. He has served efficiently in the present government. He earlier worked as chief whip and minster. I am sure with his rich experience he will be successful Speaker.”

The motion was supported by others. Following Chief Minister’s motion, Arukh took the responsibility of new speaker. 

According to sources, Arukh was Forest & Environment Minister in the outgoing ministry. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had asked all his ministers to resign on June 4 including former Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro. A new council of 21 ministers was sworn in on June 5 following which Arukh was tipped to be the next Speaker. 

Most of the time, leaders of opposition allege that Speakers are biased. This time, opposition leaders hope that Arukh would remain unbiased during Assembly proceedings.  With monsoon session beginning a few days away, it will be seen how Arukh would run the Assembly successfully by giving equal importance to opposition leaders.

With e-Assembly and a paperless Assembly on the cards, it will be seen how Arukh executes the project in less time.