Pramila Mallik became the first woman Speaker of the State.
Senior Biju Janta Dal leader Pramila Mallik was elected the new speaker of the Odisha Legislative Assembly unopposed on Friday. She became the first woman Speaker of the State.
Chief Minister and BJD President Naveen Patnaik nominated Mallik as the candidate for the post on Wednesday.
Speaking to ANI Pramila Mallik said, "I am very happy on being elected as Speaker, I would like to thank Chief Minister and Party President Naveen Patnaik who has always been at the forefront of women empowerment on social as well as political front."
Women MLAs of Biju Janta Dal greeted Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and thanked him on Pramila Mallik being elected as the first women Speaker of Odisha.
Senior Biju Janta Dal leader Debi Mishra said, "Naveen Patnaik has always been ahead in setting an example to take women empowerment on priority, Biju Janata Dal is the first party which gave 33 per cent tickets to women in the 2019 Loksabha election and the first party to make 50 per cent reservation for women in local elected bodies."
"Biju Janta Dal is the first party to make more than 70 per cent women Zila Parishad presidents. Odisha is the state with the highest representation of women in parliament. Pramila Bisoyi the eldest Member of Parliament is from BJD and Chandrani Murmu was elected as MP at the age of 25 (in 2019) is from BJD," said a statement from Biju Janta Dal.
Pramila Mallik is a six-time MLA from Binjharpur Assembly Constituency, first elected in the year 1990 on the Janta Dal ticket and in the year 2000 from Biju Janta Dal.
She has also held different portfolios as Cabinet Minister in Naveen Patnaik's BJD government and Chief whip of the party in the state assembly.
The post has been laying vacant after former speaker Bikram Keshari Arukha was appointed Finance Minister during the last reshuffle of the cabinet by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.
Earlier CM Naveen Patnaik held a legislative party meeting ahead of the monsoon session of Odisha Assembly.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)