The BJP-led NDA at Centre on Tuesday named tribal leader Draupadi Murmu as its Presidential candidate. If elected, Murmu, former Jharkhand Governor, would become the first tribal President of India.
Born on June 20, 1958, Draupadi Murmu comes from a Santhal tribal family of Uparbeda village in Kusumi block of Mayurbhanj district in Odisha. Her father’s name was Biranchi Narayan Tudu and her husband’s name was Shyam Charam Murmu.
She began her political career in 1997 and since then she has not looked back. In 1997, Draupadi Murmu was elected councilor in the Rajrangpur district of Odisha and also became the vice-president of the Scheduled Tribes Morcha of the Odisha unit of the BJP.
Murmu served as an honorary assistant teacher at Sri Aurobindo Integral Education and Research in Rairangpur and as a junior assistant in the irrigation department prior to entering politics.
Murmu was also Mayurbhanj’s BJP District President from 2002 to 2009, and again in 2013. She served as a Cabinet minister in the Naveen Patnaik government and was a two-time BJP MLA in Odisha. In Odisha, a coalition government led by the Biju Janata Dal and the Bharatiya Janata Party was in power at the time.
She received the Neelkanth Award for Best Legislator from the Odisha Legislative Assembly. Murmu was the leader of the BJP’s Mayurbhanj district unit in Odisha and represented the Rairangpur region in the state legislature.
She also served as Jharkhand’s first female governor. Virender Singh, Chief Justice of the Jharkhand High Court, delivered the oath to Murmu.
Draupadi Murmu had lost her husband and two boys, yet she remained unfazed in her determination to serve her society. She has 20 years of experience fighting for the tribal community’s upliftment and is a key tribal face for the BJP.
The Centre has accorded a Z+ security cover of CRPF commandos to the NDA’s presidential candidate Draupadi Murmu, officials said on Wednesday.
The armed squad took over the security of Murmu, 64, early Wednesday morning, a senior officer told PTI.