The eight-member panel will now have four women members, including Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MPs Kanta Kardam, Sumitra Balmik and Geeta alias Chandraprabha; and Biju Janata Dal's Mamata Mohanta.
In a historic move, Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar has nominated four women members, including Padma Shree and renowned athlete P T Usha, to the panel of Vice-Chairpersons of the House.
All four women members nominated to the panel are first term Parliamentarians while S. Phangnon Konyak is the first-ever woman from Nagaland to be elected as a member of the Rajya Sabha.
The panel reconstituted before the Monsoon Session contains a total of eight names.This is the first time in the history of the Upper House that equal representation has been given to women members in the panel of Vice-Chairpersons.
In another notable development, the Rajya Sabha Chair has become fully digital. The Chair will be using electronic tablets for matters related to the conduct of business in the House, attendance in the House, details of members speaking and other relevant information.
Following are the details of the women members nominated to the panel of Vice-Chairpersons.
P T Usha is a Padma Shri awardee and a renowned athlete. She was nominated to the Rajya Sabha in July 2022. She is a Member of the Committee on Defense, Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, and Committee on Ethics.
S Phangnon Konyak belongs to the Bharatiya Janata Party. She is the first woman to be elected as member of Rajya Sabha from Nagaland in April 2022 and the second woman from the state to be elected to either House of Parliament or the state Assembly.
Fauzia Khan belongs to the Nationalist Congress Party. She was elected to the Rajya Sabha in April, 2020. She is a member of the Committee on Empowerment of Women, Committee on Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Law and Justice.
Sulata Deo belongs to the Biju Janata Dal. She was elected to Rajya Sabha in July, 2022. She is a member of the Committee on Industry, Committee on Empowerment of Women, Joint Committee on Office of Profit, Committee on Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS) and Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Women and Child Development.
Apart from these four women members, V Vijayasai Reddy, Ghanshyam Tiwari, L. Hanumanthaiah and Sukhendu Sekhar Ray have also been nominated to the panel of vice-chairpersons.