Born on April 12, 1943 in Chiplun of Ratnagiri district in Maharashtra, Mahajan became a municipal corporator in 1982. A lawyer-turned-politician, Mahajan is known for her trademark simplicity, honesty and clean image besides her impeccable winning record at the hustings.
Here are 8 interesting things you should know about the new Lok Sabha Speaker:
1. Soft-spoken Sumitra Mahajan, an eight-time BJP MP, is a battle-hardened leader who has risen from the ranks to the top post of Lok Sabha Speaker.
2. Interestingly, the official name of 71-year-old Mahajan, the eldest and senior-most among women Members of Parliament, in the 16th Lok Sabha MPs’ list is also mentioned as “Sumitra Mahajan (Tai)”.
3. Mahajan is the second woman after Meira Kumar to be elected as Lok Sabha Speaker.
4. Starting her political life at the age of 39, she became the deputy mayor and then an MP from Indore in Madhya Pradesh. She was a minister of state in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee cabinet from 1999 to 2004, holding different portfolios of human resources, communications, IT, petroleum and natural gas.
5. An active parliamentarian, she has not only headed important committees, but has also been a keen debater and avid questioner inside the House, often seen putting ministers on the mat with her calm but firm interventions.
6. The mild-mannered Mahajan has over the years emerged as a force to reckon with in Indore where she never lost since she first became an MP in 1989 and a generation of opposition leaders have been waiting to trounce her.
7. She, however, had lost the Indore assembly election thrice before becoming an MP.
8. Mahajan won her Lok Sabha seat for the eighth consecutive time in this election by an impressive margin of 4.67 lakh votes.