Draupadi Murmu: 15th President of India & India’s First Tribal President

Draupadi Murmu

Draupadi Murmu: India’s First Tribal President & 15th President of India

Draupadi Murmu is president elect of India. She was a member of Bhartiya Janata Party. She was the presidential candidate for the NDA (National Democratic Alliance) for the election in 2022.

Draupadi Murmu is the second person from schedule tribe, who is nominated for the post of Indian President. During 2015 to 2021, she served as the 9th Governor of Jharkhand.

Personal life:

Draupadi Murmu was born on 20th June 1858 in Uparbeda village of Mayurbhanj district in Odisha, India. She was born in a Santali tribal family to Biranchi Narayab Tudu. Both Murmu’s father and grandfather were elected as sarpanch under the Panchayati Raj system.

She completed her education from Rama Devi Women’s University. She was a teacher by profession.
She married Shyam Charan Murmu.

He was a banker. He died in 2014. The couple have 2 sons and a daughter named Itishri. In a span of 4-years, he lost her husband & two sons.

Teaching career:

Before entering state politics, she started out as a school teacher. At the Shri Aurobindo Integral Education & Research Institute, Murmu worked as an assistant professor. She also worked as a Junior Assistant at the irrigation department of the Government of Odisha.

Political career:

In 1997, she joined BJP (Bhartiya Janata Party). She was elected as the councillor of the Rairangpur Nagar Panchayat. In 2000, she became the chairperson of Rairangpur Nagar Panchayat.

Draupadi Murmu served as the national vice-president of BJP Scheduled Tribes Morcha. From March 6, 2000, to August 6, 2002, during the BJP and Biju Janata Dal coalition government in Odisha, murmu was the Minister of State with Independent Charge for Commerce and Transportation and Fisheries. 

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Also she was the state minister of Animal Resources Development from August 6, 2002, to May 16, 2004.

During the year 2000 & 2004, She is former Odisha Minister and an MLA from Rairangpur Assembly constituency. In 2007, she conferred Nilkantha Award for Best MLA by Odisha Legislative Assembly.

Governor of Jharkhand:

On 18th May 2015, she took oath as the Governor of Jharkhand. Murmu was the first female tribal leader from Odisha to be appointed as a governor of an Indian state.

In 2017, as a Governor, she refused to give assent to a bill approved by the Jharkhand Legislative Assembly seeking amendments to the Chhotanagpur Tenancy Act, 1908, and the Santhal Pargana Tenancy Act, 1949.

The bill was to give rights to tribals to make commercial use of their land, while ensuring that the ownership of land does not change.

Draupadi Murmu sought an explanation from the Raghubar Das-led BJP government about the changes it would bring for the well-being of tribal.

2022 presidential campaign:

BJP nominated Draupadi Murmu as the National Democratic alliance’s candidate for President of India for 2022 in June 2022.

As a part of the campaign, she visited many states around the country seeking support for her candidature from Bhartiys Janata Party lawmakers and other opposition parties.

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Draupadi Murmu also visited NE states, the JMM party of Jharkhand, BJD of Odisha, Shiv Sena of Maharashta, BSP of Uttar Pradesh, JDS of Karnataka and many others were some of the prominent opposition parties that extended their support to her.

Controversies:

  • Conngress called her a dummy candidate of BJP through its tweet.
  • RJD’s Tejaswi Yadav called her a statue and stated that Rashtrapati Bhavan did not need her.
  • Further comments were passed saying Murmu represents “evil philosophy of India” by the opposition. All these critics faced severe backlash from many parties and people.

Awards & Honors:

In 2007, Draupadi Murmu received the Nilkantha Award for the best MLA (Member of Legislative Assembly) by Odisha Legislative Assembly.

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