Droupadi Murmu
elected India’s first
tribal president, will
take office on July 25

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NEW DELHI: Lawmakers chose India’s first president from the country’s tribal communities on Thursday, which could boost the appeal of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s party among marginalised groups ahead of the 2024 general election.

Droupadi Murmu, a 64-year-old teacher turned politician, will be the second woman to hold the largely ceremonial role as head of the republic when she takes office on July 25 at the start of a five-year term.

New Delhi: India’s Prime Minister Narender Modi presenting flowers to newly elected President Droupadi Murmu on Thursday.

More than 4,500 state and federal lawmakers voted in the presidential election on Monday and ballots were counted on Thursday. Murmu’s victory was assured as she was backed by Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which dominates federal and state politics.

“A daughter of India hailing from a tribal community born in a remote part of eastern India has been elected our President!” Modi said on Twitter.

Born into a family of the Santhal tribe from the state of Odisha, Murmu started her career as a school teacher and actively participated in community issues.

She later joined mainstream politics and served as a BJP state lawmaker in Odisha before becoming governor of the eastern state of Jharkhand.

Her election is seen as the BJP’s outreach to India’s tribal communities, which comprise more than 8 per cent of its 1.4 billion people.

Murmu beat the opposition candidate Yashwant Sinha, a former BJP finance minister and now a fierce critic of Modi, winning nearly twice as many votes.

The Indian president acts as the Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces but the prime minister holds executive powers. Murmu will take over from Ram Nath Kovind.

The president, nevertheless, has a key role during political crises, such as when a general election is inconclusive, by deciding which party is in the best position to form a government.

Narender Modi meets

Prime Minister Narendra Modi met Droupadi Murmu at her residence on Thursday and greeted and congratulated her on being elected as the new President of the country.
Bharatiya Janata Party president JP Nadda was also present during the meeting. Murmu has already got 50 per cent of the total value of valid votes at the end of the third round of counting in the Presidential election. She will be India’s 15th President.

New Delhi: India’s Prime Minister Narender Modi presenting flowers to newly elected President Droupadi Murmu on Thursday.

Briefing the media, Rajya Sabha Secretary General PC Mody, who is returning officer for the election, said Droupadi Murmu has got 2161 votes whose electoral value is 5,77,777.
The presidential contest was between Murmu and opposition candidate Yashwant Sinha.
“Up to this round, the cumulative total is – total valid votes is 3219 with a total value of 8,38,839 of which Droupadi Murmu gets 2161 votes of the value of 5,77,777. Yashwant Sinha get 1058 votes of the value of 2,61,062,” Mody said.
He said the states covered in the third round are Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Odisha and Punjab.
“In this round, total valid votes 1,333. Total value of valid votes is 1,65,664. Droupadi Murmu got 812 votes, Yashwant Sinha got 521 votes,” Mody said.
Odisha’s Rairangpur village, the native place of NDA’s presidential candidate Droupadi Murmu erupted in celebrations in anticipation of Droupadi Murmu’s victory.
A large crowd gathered outside BJP Headquarters in Delhi earlier this evening to celebrate Murmu’s victory.

Messages of congratulation

Congress president Sonia Gandhi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and NCP leader Sharad Pawar were among the opposition leaders who congratulated Droupadi Murmu on her election as the country’s 15th President.
“I send my congratulations and best wishes to the President-elect Smt. Droupadi Murmu. I look forward to meeting her soon as well,” Sonia Gandhi said in a message. Party leader Rahul Gandhi also congratulated Droupadi Murmu.

India’s new elected President Droupadi Murmu

“Congratulations and best wishes to Droupadi Murmu ji on being elected as the 15th President of India,” he said in a tweet.
Mamata Banerjee said the country will sincerely look up to Droupadi Murmu to protect the ideals of our Constitution
“I would like to congratulate President-elect Droupadi Murmu. The country will sincerely look up to you as the Head of State to protect the ideals of our Constitution and be the custodian of our democracy, especially when the nation is plagued with so many dissensions,” Banerjee said in a Twitter post.
Sharad Pawar wished Droupadi Murmu success in her new role.
“Heartfelt congratulations Droupadi Murmu on being elected as the President of India. My best wishes to you as you prepare to take up the responsibilities and charge of your esteemed office. Wishing you success in your tenure as President,” Pawar said in a tweet.
Opposition Presidential candidate Yashwant Sinha also congratulated his contender Droupadi Murmu.
“I heartily congratulate Droupadi Murmu on her victory in the Presidential Election 2022. I hope — indeed, every Indian hopes — that as the 15th President of India she functions as the Custodian of the Constitution without fear or favour. I join my fellow countrymen in extending best wishes to her,” he said.
Droupadi Murmu, NDA’s Presidential candidate, on Thursday emerged victorious in the presidential election which was held on July 18. She secured 2824 votes with a value of 6,76,803. (ANI)