New Delhi: Leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley, BSP supremo Mayawati, Union ministers Vilasrao Deshmukh and Rajeev Shukla, and Telugu superstar Chiranjeevi and actor Jaya Bachchan were among the 50 new members who took oath in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday. Jaitley, who was re-elected to the Upper House from Gujarat, was the first to be called to take oath.
After taking oath in Hindi, he greeted Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Chairman Hamid Ansari. Ansari congratulated Jaitley and remarked "welcome back."
Mayawati, who got elected to the Upper House after her party suffered defeat in Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls, solemnly affirmed in Hindi that she would bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution.
Even before the House met for the day, she was greeted by leaders cutting across political lines. After taking oath, she walked up to the Prime Minister, who stood up to acknowledge her greetings with folded hands.
Deshmukh, who along with fellow partyman Rajeev Shukla was elected from Maharasthra, took oath in Marathi. Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Shukla took oath in Hindi.
Former Deputy Chairman of Rajya Sabha K Rahman Khan (Congress) took oath in the name of Almighty in English and was was greeted with loud thumping of desks by members. Ansari welcomed Khan saying "Rahman Saheb, Mubarak Ho".
After the oath, Khan, who was re-elected for the fourth consecutive time from Karnataka, walked up to the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition and greeted them. Former Union minister Renuka Chaudhary (Congress), who greeted members before the House assembled, took oath in Hindi.
Superstar-turned-politician Chiranjeevi (Cong) greeted the Prime Minister, Petroleum Minister S Jaipal Reddy and BJP leader M Venkaiah Naidu after taking oath.
BJP general secretary Ravi Shankar Prasad was among the six members from Bihar to take oath. Najma Heptullah, who was elected on BJP ticket from Madhya Pradesh, took oath in Urdu in the name of Almighty. As Heptullah moved towards the mike when her name was called, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar remarked that she was a true nationalist, having being elected to Rajya Sabha from Rajasthan, Maharasthra and now Madhya Pradesh.
Jaya Bachchan, who returned to Samajwadi Party fold after a brief split following expulsion of Amar Singh from the party, took oath in English and was welcomed by Ansari. CPI-M leader Tapan Kumar Sen, who returned to the Upper House from West Bengal, took oath in Bengali.
From Gujarat, Mansukh Mandaviya and Shankar Vegad (both BJP) and Pravin Rashtrapal (Cong) took oath. Bhushan Lal Jhangde (BJP), who was elected unopposed from Chhattisgarh, took oath in Hindi. Shadi Lal Batra, who was re-elected to the Upper House on Congress ticket, took oath in Punjabi.
Jagat Prakash Nadda (BJP), who was elected from Himachal Pradesh, took oath in Hindi while businessman Rajeev Chandrasekhar, an independent candidate who had secured the support of JD(S) and BJP for the second term from Karnataka, took oath in English. From Karnataka, Basavaraj Patil Sedam and R Ramakrishna (both BJP) took oath.
Besides Renuka Choudhary and Chiranjeevi, others from Andhra Pradesh who took oath included former journalist Rapolu Ananda Bhaskar (Cong) and industrialist C M Ramesh of TDP.
From Bihar, Ali Anwar Ansari, Anil Sahni, Mahendra Prasad, Vashisht Narayan Singh (all JD-U) and Dharmendra Pradhan (BJP) took oath. Kaptan Singh Solanki, Faggan Singh Kulaste and Thawarchand Gehlot (all BJP), who were elected from Madhya Pradesh, also took oath. The lone Congress nominee from the state, Satyawat Chaturvedi, who was earlier Rajya Sabha member from Uttarakhand, also took oath.