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Who is Droupadi Murmu?

Ever since, the BJP has announced its presidential candidate there’s a massive buzz all around. The ruling party named tribal leader Droupadi Murmu as its Presidential candidate on Tuesday evening, while the Opposition parties announced former Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha’s name as their choice for the topmost post in the country.

Reacting to this, Murmu said: “I got the news [of getting elected as the Presidential candidate] from all of you [media]. I don’t want to comment on it right now. Thank you very much.”

But who is Droupadi Murmu? What is her backstory?

Born in 1958 in Odisha in a tribal family, if elected Murmu would be the first President of India from a tribal community from Odisha. She was the first member of the tribal community to have served as the governor of Jharkhand. She was once part of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) Cabinet in Odisha when Navin Patnaik formed the government with the support of the BJP. BJD’s Naveen Patnaik is backing the NDA candidate.

Here are four major pointers to highlight the journey of BJP’s candidate’s for Presidency.

  1. Hailing from Odisha’s Mayurbhanj district, Murmu started out as a teacher before entering state politics.
  2. She has been an MLA twice, on BJP ticket, from Rairangpur in Mayurbhanj (2000 and 2009).
  3. Murmu was first considered a contender five years ago, when President Pranab Mukherjee was set to leave Rashtrapati Bhavan
  4. In 2015, Murmu was sworn in as the first woman Governor of Jharkhand.
  5. In her personal life, Murmu has seen much tragedy, having lost both her husband Shyam Charan Murmu and two sons.

Apart from Murmu , among former presidents, only VV Giri (1969-1974) had a Odisha connection.

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