Tribal BJP MLA Tulsi Ram elected HP assembly Speaker

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Dharamshala, Jan 11 (UNI) Three time MLA from the Bharmour tribal segment, Tulsi Ram of the BJP was today unanimously elected as the Speaker of Himachal Vidhan Sabha.

Immediately after the newly elected MLAs were administered oath by Pro-Tem Speaker Rikhi Ram Kaundal at the opening of winter session of Vidhan Sabha, which began here today, Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal moved a motion proposing the name of Mr Tulsi Ram for the post of Speaker of the House.

BJP MLA Suresh Bhardwaj seconded the proposal. Forest Minister Jagat Prakash Nadda and Irrigation and Public Health Minister Ravinder Ravi moved separate proposals in favour of Mr Ram.

As the opposition Congress did not field any candidate Mr Tulsi Ram was declared elected.

He is the second leader from tribal area of Himachal who has been elevated to the post of Speaker. Earlier, Mr Thakur Sen Negi from Kinnaur occupied this post on three occasions.

Mr Tulsi Ram is the third MLA from Chamba district to occupy the Speaker's chair. Mr Jaywant Ram and Des Raj Mahajan were the other two from the district to occupy this post.

Thanking the House, Mr Ram said it was not only a personal honour to him, but a gesture of respect for the entire tribal area of Himachal Pradesh.

He said his effort would be to function as per rules and in a impartial manner. He said he would try to build a coordial atmosphere in the House.

Earlier, Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal congratulated Mr Tulsi Ram on his election.

Terming him as an honest and impartial politician, Mr Dhumal thanked the opposition Congress party for facilitating the unanimous election of the Speaker.

Congress Legislature Party Leader Vidya Stokes also congratulated Mr Ram and hoped that he would keep in mind the grace and discipline attached to the Speaker's chair.

She appreciated the new Speaker for his simplicity and sobriety and promised cooperation by Congress party in smooth functioning of the House.

Congress MLA Kuldeep Pathania, state BJP chief and MLA Jai Ram Thakur and Mr Bhardwaj also congratulated Mr Ram.

Before entering politics, Mr Tulsi Ram was a government employee.

He has won assembly elections from Bharmour in 1990, 1998 and 2007.

Prior to the Speaker's election, the newly elected MLAs were administered oath. The Chief Minister was the first one to take the oath, followed by ministers and then other MLAs.


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