According to sources, the ruling BJP is planning to install its own person on the position.
Mumbai: In the engrossing political battle in the state, even the temporary appointment of a pro tem speaker has assumed a lot of significance. According to sources, the ruling BJP is planning to install its own person on the position.
The pro tem speaker has a limited role of administering oath to the newly-elected legislators and supervising the process of the election of a new speaker, who then conducts the floor test for the chief minister to prove his majority.
The governor has to convene a brief session of the Vidhan Sabha to facilitate the floor test and appoint a pro-tem speaker. As per the precedence, the MLA with maximum experience is appointed the pro tem speaker. In the current Vidhan Sabha, Congress’ Balasaheb Thorat is said to be the senior-most legislator.
However, sources said the appointment of a pro tem speaker is the sole discretion of the governor. “It is not mandatory for governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari to follow the convention, and he can appoint any other person on that position,” said a senior official.
In the changed political scenario, the BJP would want to have its own MLA occupy the seat. The name of senior MLA Babanrao Pachpute has been doing the rounds for the ceremonial post.
According to sources, the parliamentary affairs department has forwarded a list of as many as 17 legislators, who have completed five terms as an MLA, to the governor.
Sensing the possibility of BJP installing its own legislator as the pro tem speaker, Congress leader and former chief minister Ashok Chavan has demanded that senior-most member of the Assembly should be made the pro tem speaker.