Focus on economic crisis: Meira Kumar

Speaking in the Lok Sabha after being elected to the coveted post, Meira Kumar, a five-time MP, said: ''The world is passing through its worst-ever recession and India is not separated from it.''

The former foreign service officer said the economic crisis "should be a matter of national concern so that we can unitedly resolve it."

"It is the call of the time that we rise above political boundaries and adopt a national perspective," Speaker Meira Kumar said, after members paid her glowing tributes on being elected to the post.

She called it a "historic moment" that a woman had emerged as a consensus candidate for the speaker's post and thanked the house for picking her for the honour.

Meira Kumar, 64, daughter of freedom fighter and Dalit leader Jagjivan Ram, profusely thanked the members for praising her late father and said "I am not able to find words to express my gratitude to you all despite trying a lot".

The new speaker assured the members that she would "ensure that the decorum of the august house is maintained".

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