Speaker & Pro-tem Speaker

Speaker & Pro-tem Speaker

Speaker & Pro-tem Speaker

Pro-tem Speaker

  • When the Speaker of the last Lok Sabha vacates his office immediately before the first meeting of the newly-elected Lok Sabha, the President appoints a member of the Lok Sabha as the Pro-Tem Speaker (usually, the senior most member).
  • The President himself administers oath to the Pro-Tem Speaker.
  • He/She presides over the first sitting of the newly-elected Lok Sabha and has all the powers of the Speaker.
  • The main responsibility is to administer oaths to the new members and to enable the House to elect the new Speaker.
  • When the new Speaker is elected by the House, the office of the Pro-Tem Speaker ceases to exist.


  • The Speaker is the constitutional and ceremonial head of the House.
  • Each House of Parliament has its presiding officer.
  • There is a Speaker and a Deputy Speaker for the Lok Sabha and a Chairman and a Deputy Chairman for the Rajya Sabha.
  • The Speaker is assisted by the Secretary-General of the Lok Sabha and senior officers of the Secretariat on parliamentary activities, practice, and procedure.
  • In the absence of the Speaker, the Deputy Speaker discharges the functions.
  • A member from the panel of Chairmen presides over the House in the absence of both the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker. However, a member of the panel of chairpersons cannot preside over the house, when the office of the Speaker or the deputy speaker is vacant.


  • The House elects its presiding officer by a simple majority of members present, who vote in the House.
  • Usually, a member belonging to the ruling party is elected as speaker whereas a deputy speaker is elected from the opposition party.
  • There are also instances when members not belonging to the ruling party were elected to the office of the Speaker.
  • GMC Balayogi and Manohar Joshi belonging to the non-ruling party served as the Speaker in the 12th and 13th Lok Sabha. 
  • When the Lok Sabha is dissolved, the Speaker remains in his office till the first meeting of the new assembly when the new speaker is elected.


  • The Constitution has given the Lower House authority to remove the Speaker if needed. 
  • The House can remove the Speaker through a resolution with notice of 14 days, passed by an effective majority (more than 50% of the effective strength (total strength-vacancies) of the house present and voting) as per Articles 94 of the Indian Constitution.
  • The Speaker can also be removed from getting disqualified from being a Lok Sabha member under sections 7 and 8 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
  • A speaker can also give his resignation to a Deputy Speaker.

Sources of Power and Duties

The Speaker of the Lok Sabha derives his powers and duties from three sources: 

  • Constitution of India, 
  • Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business of Lok Sabha,
  • Parliamentary Conventions (residuary powers that are unwritten or unspecified in the rules)

Provisions to Ensure Independence and Impartiality of Speaker

  • He is provided with a security of tenure. He can be removed only by a resolution passed by the Lok Sabha by an effective majority.
  • His salaries and allowances are charged to the Consolidated Fund of India and thus are not subject to the annual vote of Parliament.
  • His work and conduct cannot be discussed and criticized in the Lok Sabha except on a substantive motion.
  • His powers of regulating procedures conducting business or maintaining order in the House are not subject to the jurisdiction of any Court.
  • He cannot vote in the first instance. He can only exercise a casting vote in the event of a tie. This makes the position of the speaker impartial.
  • He is placed at sixth rank in the order of precedence along with the Chief Justice of India.

Related Links:

President of IndiaParliamentary Committee
High Court of IndiaLokpal and Lokayukta