Hyderabad: Kodela Sivaparasada Rao on Friday took over as the speaker of the Andhra Pradesh legislative assembly.
Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu, YSR Congress Party (YSRCP) president Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy and Legislative Affairs Minister Y.Ramakrishnudu escorted him to the chair after pro-tem speaker P. Narayanaswamy Naidu announced his unanimous election as the speaker.
Kodela said he was pleased to be unanimously elected as the first speaker of Andhra Pradesh after the bifurcation of the state.
Stating that the residuary state is at a crossroads due to the division, he sought the cooperation of all members for the smooth conduct of the House so that the state can march on the path of progress.
The 67-year-old said the debates in the assembly should be held in a democratic manner so that the people's problems could be solved.
The veteran legislator of the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP) represents Sattenpalli constituency in Guntur district of coastal Andhra. A physician by profession, the six-time legislator also served as cabinet minister earlier.
Chandrababu Naidu, who is also the TDP president, said they were proud of making Kodela the speaker. He said Kodela efficiently performed any task given to him and hoped that he will also bring glory to the new post.
Telugu actor N. Balakrishna, a first time legislator, also praised Kodela and described him as a good leader with vast experience.
Jaganmohan Reddy, whose party supported Kodela's candidature, said the speaker carries the responsibility of protecting democracy in the House and hoped that Kodela will uphold the rich traditions by showing no discrimination between the ruling and the opposition parties.
Meanwhile, TDP legislator from East Godavari district, G. Surya Rao is likely to become the deputy speaker. The notification for the election was issued Friday and it will be held June 23.
It was not clear immediately if the YSRCP will also support the TDP candidate for the deputy speaker's post.