New Delhi: Setting aside their confrontation over the CAG report on coal block allocation, opposition and the ruling dispensation on Tuesday got together in a rare show to unanimously elect Congress leader PJ Kurien as Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman.

The House, which was adjourned earlier for an hour after uproar over CAG reports tabled on Friday, saw the opposition suspending its attack on the government to allow the election and subsequent felicitations to Kurien by members from all parties.

Earlier, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh proposed Kurien's name for the post and was seconded by Leader of the Opposition Arun Jaitley.

After Chairman Hamid Ansari announced Kurien's election, the Prime Minister and Jaitley escorted him to his seat.

The House showered lavish praise on Kurien with the Prime Minister saying, it is a proof of the wide appreciation and support the Congress leader enjoys in the House.

Singh said Kurien has "vast experience" and has been conducting the proceedings of the House with great aplomb. "We wish him all success and promise him that we will cooperate with him to the maximum so that the House can run smoothly."

Ansari said his unanimous election showed he has endeared himself to all sections of the House.

As Kurien's seat is next to Jaitely, the Leader of the Opposition said in a lighter vein, "Now that he has literally crossed the floor and has come to this side, I'm sure he will be fair to this side."

Jaitley noted that since the days of unanimous elections are very rare now, Kurien making it to the post is a proof of both his pleasantness and patience.

"He has earned tremendous goodwill of the House," he said. A beaming Kurien said he will try to accommodate views of all members in running the House.


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