Meira Kumar today made history in the Lok Sabha when she was unanimously elected its Speaker and thus became the first woman to occupy one of the high Constitutional posts.
64-year-old Kumar, Congress' dalit face, a former foreign service official and Union Minister, was elected after a resolution moved by UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and seconded by Leader of the House Pranab Mukherjee was approved by a voice vote amidst thumping of deks by the entire House.
Kumar, elected from Sasaram in Bihar in the recent elections, is the daughter of the late Jagjivan Ram.
Ealier, leaders cutting across the political spectrum, including L K Advani (BJP, Mamata Banerjee (Trinamool Congress), T R Baalu (DMK), Arjun Charan Sethi BJD), Sharad Yadav (JD-U), Mulayam Singh Yadav (SP), Lalu Prasad (RJD), Ram Sundar Das (JD-U), Sharad Pawar (NCP), Farooq Abdullah (NC) and E Ahmed (Muslim League) also tabled their motions
proposing Kumar for the post.
After Sonia's motion was approved by a voice vote, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Mukherjee and Advani escorted Kumar, who was sitting in the front benches, to the Speaker's Chair.
After Kumar took the Chair, Singh hailed her election as a historic moment and said her services as a distinguished diplomat, 25 years in Parliament and her role as a Minister would stand her in good stead to execute her onerous job well.