New Delhi: In the latest round of development in Maharashtra politics, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Kalidas Kolambkar took oath as Pro-tem Speaker in Raj Bhawan on Tuesday, news agency ANI reported.

Eight-time Wadala MLA Kolambkar was one of the candidates recommended for the post to the governor. “The governor has administered oath to Kolambkar as pro-tem speaker of the assembly. Kolambkar will administer oath to remaining 287 MLAs during the assembly session,” said an official from Raj Bhavan.

It must be noted that this was followed by Chief Minister Fadnavis and Deputy CM Ajit Pawar resigning.

After the Supreme Court ordered that an open ballot floor test for Maharashtra will be held on November 27, several names had cropped up for the role of the Protem Speaker.

While Radhakrishna Vikhe-Patil, Kalidas Kolambkar, Babanrao Bhikaji Pachpute were in the fray from the BJP, Congress leaders Balasaheb Thorat, KC Padvi were also being considered as the front-runners for the post of the pro-tem speaker. NCP’s Jayant Patil and Dilip Walse-Patil were also in the list.

Speculations were rife that Congress’ Balasaheb Thorat, a legislator elected from Sangamner (Ahmednagar), would be elected as the Protem Speaker as he is the seniormost MLA with eight terms behind him. He was also elected as Congress Legislative Party leader earlier in the day.

What is the role of the pro-tem speaker?

The pro-tem speaker has a limited role. He administers the oath of office to the newly-elected legislators. He also supervises the process of the election of a new speaker, who later conducts the floor test for the chief minister to prove his majority. But in case of Maharashtra pro-tem speaker will conduct floor test, following the directive of the Supreme Court.

How is he\she appointed?

The Governor appoints the pro-tem Speaker after seeking recommendations from the Chief Minister.