Sumitra Mahajan is the Speaker of the Lok Sabha. The longest serving woman member of the Parliament, Mahajan was elected to the Lok Sabha in 2014 for the eighth time. On June 2014, Mahajan was elected as Speaker of the Lok Sabha and is the second woman to hold the post, the first being Meira Kumar.
Born in Chiplun, Maharashtra, Mahajan finished her education from Indore University. Her political career began in 1984 when she was elected the Deputy Mayor of the Municipal Corporation in Indore. In 1989, she contested in the Lok Sabha elections for the first time and won a seat for herself. Previously she has also served as Union Minister and Minister for Human Resources, Communications, and Petroleum. Earlier she has also worked as a member of the ‘Panel of Chairmen’ in the Lok Sabha.
Fondly referred to as ‘tai’ by the people of her constituency, Mahajan is particularly known for her honesty and simplicity. In the Parliament, she is particularly known for her being an avid debater. On the personal front, Mahajan is fond of music, reading, and cinema. She is also known to be interested in social reform, particularly in women’s welfare.
In August 2015, Mahajan faced criticism from the opposition when she suspended 25 opposition MPs on grounds of disrupting the house. Reacting to her decision, Congress leader Sonia Gandhi had termed it as ‘a black day in the history of India’s Parliamentary democracy.’