Draupadi Murmu, Tribal Leader From Odisha And Former Jharkhand Governor, Is BJP-led NDA candidate for President

by Swarajya Staff - Jun 21, 2022 11:06 PM +05:30 IST
Draupadi Murmu, Tribal Leader From Odisha And Former Jharkhand Governor, Is BJP-led NDA candidate for PresidentDraupadi Murmu,
Snapshot
  • The BJP parliamentary board today (Jun 21) named Draupadi Murmu, a tribal leader of the party from Odisha, as the ruling NDA's candidate for the presidential election.

    Murmu (64), a former Jharkhand governor, will be the first tribal woman to occupy the top constitutional post if she is elected, a strong possibility as numbers are stacked in the favour of the BJP-led NDA.

The BJP parliamentary board today (Jun 21) named Draupadi Murmu, a tribal leader of the party from Odisha, as the ruling NDA's candidate for the presidential election.

BJP president J P Nadda announced her name at a press conference following a meeting of the party top brass.

Nadda told reporters that around 20 names were discussed by the party leadership for the presidential candidate before it decided to pick someone from the eastern region and a tribal and woman. He said the ruling party wanted a consensus choice for the next President but it could not happen as the Opposition went ahead by naming its own candidate.

Murmu (64), a former Jharkhand governor, will be the first tribal woman to occupy the top constitutional post if she is elected, a strong possibility as numbers are stacked in the favour of the BJP-led NDA.

Considered a soft-spoken and affable leader who comes from Mayurbhanj, one of the more backward regions of Odisha, Murmu has held various positions in the party rising through the ranks and was a minister in the state when the BJP was in alliance with the ruling Biju Janata Dal.

Murmu started out as an administrative assistant in state irrigation department and later worked as a teacher before entering into Odisha politics.

Murmu was elected as the councillor of Rairangpur Nagar Panchayat in 1997. She also headed the BJP’s Mayurbhanj district unit in Odisha

A two-time BJP MLA from Rairangpur in Mayurbhanj (she won both in 2000 and 2004 elections), Murmu was a Minister in the Naveen Patnaik Cabinet when the Biju Janata Dal ruled the State with the support of Bharatiya Janata Party. She first served in the Commerce and Transport and later in the Fisheries and Animal Resources department between 2000 and 2004.

Murmu was married to Shyam Charan Murmu. The couple had two sons and a daughter. Murmu’s life has been marked by personal tragedies and the loss of her husband and two sons. One of her sons, Laxman Murmu, died after after he reportedely had a fall during a bike ride while returning from the hotel where he had dinner causing internal head injury.

Murmu's candidature likely to draw widespread support

Murmu is likely to draw support from several non-NDA regional parties, including Odisha's ruling BJD, and even an opposition party like Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, which is in power in Jharkhand with the Congress, may find it hard to oppose her as the party identifies itself the cause of tribals.

'Droupadi Murmu Ji has devoted her life to serving society and empowering the poor, downtrodden as well as the marginalised. She has rich administrative experience and had an outstanding gubernatorial tenure. I am confident she will be a great President of our nation.

'Millions of people, especially those who have experienced poverty and faced hardships, derive great strength from the life of Smt. Droupadi Murmu Ji. Her understanding of policy matters and compassionate nature will greatly benefit our country,' Modi tweeted.

Opposition had earlier announced Yashwant Sinha as its joint candidate for the post. The poll is slated for July 18.

The Presidential elections will be held on July 18 and the counting of votes, if needed, will be conducted on July 21. The last date of nomination has been set for June 29. The new president has to be sworn in by July 25. President Ram Nath Kovind's tenure ends on July 24.

(With inputs from PTI)

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