New Delhi, Apr 15: Petroleum Minister Murli Deora and Corporate Affairs Minister Premchand Gupta were among fifty new Rajya Sabha members who were sworn in today by Chairman Mohammad Hamid Ansari. Recently fifty-five candidates had won the biennial elections to the Upper House from 16 states. Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office, Prithviraj Chavan and Minister for Statistics and Project Implementation G K Vasan took the oath of duty to the Constitution.
Former bureaucrat N K Singh, Reliance Industries Executive Parimal Nathwani, Videocon Industries Head Venugopal Dhoot, Congress Treasurer Motilal Vora, BJP Spokesperson Prakash Javadekar, Shanta Kumar, C P Thakur, Bharat Singh Parmar, Purshotam Rupala, Prabha Jha, Balbir Punj, Forward Bloc General Secretary Debabrata Biswas, former Union Minister T Subbarami Reddy, former Manipur Chief Minister Rishang Keishing and Congress spokesperson Jayanti Natrajan were among the prominent members sworn in by Ansari.
Welcoming the newly elected and re-elected members, Ansari said he looked forward to their contribution towards enriching the traditions of the House.
"Coming as they do from diverse fields of society, I have no doubt in my mind that they will contribute immensely to enrich the debates in the House," he added.
Meanwhile, Jai Narain Prasad Nishad has been disqualified as a BJP Rajya Sabha member under the anti-defection law following a petition by senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj on charges that he had campaigned against the party.
Earlier, the issue was referred to the Privileges Committee which submitted its report in November 2007.
After considering the committee's report and Nishad's failure to appear before him, Ansari announced his disqualification.
He also announced the acceptance of resignation of AIADMK member N. Jothi from the House. Jothi, who quit the party alleging ill-treatment and lack of access to its General Secretary J. Jayalalithaa, joined the DMK on March 21.