Tradition gets a twist: No symbolic resistance, UP gets a ‘proud’ speaker in Dixit
A part of tradition, however, was followed when chief minister Yogi Adityanath and leader of opposition Ram Govind Chaudhary accompanied Dixit to the chair on the request of the protem speaker Fateh Bahadur Singh.lucknow Updated: Mar 31, 2017 12:37 IST
The Uttar Pradesh assembly on Thursday elected Hridaya Narain Dixit as its speaker for the current term.
While the tradition of electing the speaker is as old as the Westminster (British) parliamentary form, very few people are aware of the interesting manner in which the incumbent is elected and is then dragged, and not escorted, to the chair by fellow legislators.
As per the tradition, the speaker is expected to show token reluctance on being ‘taken’ to the chair — a symbolic reminder to the historical fact that this was once an office whose occupants were even eliminated, for supposedly displeasing the King.
“I do not condemn the tradition. But since it has it origin to England where at least six speakers were killed in 1300 to 1400 century, I thought we need to give it an Indian twist where democratic institutions find roots in Rig Vedic period and those representing it are respected by opposition as well,” said Dixit, who instead of showing symbolic reluctance preferred to happily occupy the chair.
A part of tradition, however, was followed when chief minister Yogi Adityanath and leader of opposition Ram Govind Chaudhary accompanied Dixit to the chair on the request of the protem speaker Fateh Bahadur Singh.
“When chief minister and other leaders filed nomination papers for my election as speaker I felt happy standing next to them,” said Dixit, perhaps to make a point that he was no reluctant occupant to the prestigious chair that expects him to play a non-partisan role in the house.
Dixit also invoked Rajarshi Purushottam Das Tandon, the state’s first speaker and others who occupied the high office over the years.
He said his endeavor would be to uphold their glorious traditions and ensure that the house witnesses more number of sittings this session.
The chief minister, on the occasion, congratulated the speaker and said his long experience as a legislator would come handy in the smooth functioning of the house.
Yogi said there were 253 first time MLAs in the 17th Vidhan Sabha and they would get benefited from the experience of seniors.
He said both the ruling party and the opposition members should have same objectives for which the people have elected them. He sought cooperation from the opposition members and urged them to make the house a platform for debates.
“In terms of population, UP is world’s sixth largest country but it lags behind in growth rate and this house should work towards taking the state ahead,” said the chief minister.
Chaudhary said the number of opposition members may be less than the number of the ruling party MLAs but the voice of opposition is always louder.
BSP leader Lalji Verma said his party would extend all cooperation on law and order issues. Congress member Aradhna Mishra requested the chief minister to increase the MLA Local Area Development Fund (MLALAD) to enable members fulfill the promises they made to the people.