Who is Nimaben Acharya, BJP MLA set to become Gujarat Assembly’s first woman Speaker?

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Updated: September 24, 2021 2:22 PM

Nimaben Acharya, an MLA from Bhuj, will replace Rajendra Trivedi who resigned as the Speaker on September 16 and joined the new state cabinet of Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel.

Nimaben Acharya, an MLA from Bhuj, will replace Rajendra Trivedi who resigned as the Speaker on September 16 and joined the new state cabinet of Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel.

Senior BJP MLA Nimaben Acharya is all set to become the first women Speaker of the Gujarat Legislative Assembly. With the opposition Congress backing her nomination, Acharya is likely to be elected unopposed to the post when the state Assembly meets for two days on September 27 and 28 for the Monsoon Session.

Acharya, an MLA from Bhuj, will replace Rajendra Trivedi who resigned as the Speaker on September 16 and joined the new state cabinet of Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel. Meanwhile, Acharya resigned from the BJP before filing nomination for the post of Speaker as per convention.

An MLA from Anjar constituency, Acharya has previously served on the Gujarat family planning council. She started her political career from Congress party and won 2002 and 2007 assembly elections. However, she was later expelled from the Congress for indulging in “anti-party activities” after she voted for Bhairo Singh Shekhawat in presidential elections.

When Acharya’s husband and six corporators switched sides to the BJP from the Congress, Acharya followed them to join the saffron party. She was sentenced to one year jail term by Morbi Magistrate for buying voters with money along with ex-MLA Kanti Amrutiya during 2009 Loksabha polls.

In April 2017, Acharya was traveling to a funeral when her vehicle was attacked by unidentified males who hurled stones at it, breaking the glass of the car, but Acharya and her driver were unharmed.

Although the Congress has agreed to support Acharya”s nomination, the party has decided to field their own candidate for the post of deputy Speaker citing the “past tradition” of the Assembly.

“As per the tradition, the post of deputy speaker was always given to the opposition. When Congress was in power, we followed it and gave this post to the opposition. But the BJP never respected this tradition ever since it came to power in Gujarat,” Leader of Opposition Paresh Dhanani told reporters.

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