The Bharatiya Jaanta Party’s Dr Virendra Kumar has been appointed as the Protem Speaker for the 17th Lok Sabha. Here's everything to know about him:
Kumar has been a seven-time parliamentarian from Tikamgarh in Madhya Pradesh. In Narendra Modi's first tenure, he has served as a Minister of State (MoS) in the Ministry of Woman and Child Development headed by Maneka Gandhi. In addition, he was also an MoS in the Minority Affairs Ministry.
Kumar has had a political career spanning across different positions. He has been elected as a member of Parliamentary Committees on Labour and Welfares, Welfare of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes and also Privileges, Petroleum and Natural Gas in different terms.
Kumar was born on February 27, 1954. In 1996, he became an MP in the 11th Lok Sabha for the first time where he represented the Sagar constituency in Madhya Pradesh. Ever since then he was on a winning streak since 2004. However, after delimitation, he contested the elections from Tikamgarh in 2009 and 2014.
Three out of six elections where he emerged victorious were held over a gap of three years in 1996, 1998 and 1999. Kumar is an MA in Economics and also holds a PhD from the reputed Dr Hari Singh Gaur University in Sagar.
Kumar began his political career by joining the RSS and he volunteered in the Total Revolution or the Bihar Movement Movement by Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan in 1974. However, he was jailed for 16 months under the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA) in Sagar and Jabalpur jails. Kumar has been closely associated with national, political, state and community-led politics and movements.
A protem speaker is a temporary position in the Lok Sabha. The duties of the Speakers include administering the oath to the new office bearers in the Lok Sabha. In addition, the protem speaker of the Lok Sabha is also appointed to preside over the first meeting of the lower house of the Parliament.