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Draupadi Murmu: From a teacher to becoming the President of India

IndiaDraupadi Murmu: From a teacher to becoming the President of India

Draupadi Murmu: From being a teacher she rose to become the President of India, and the first tribal woman to hold the top post.

There is a note of excitement in the air after Draupadi Murmu won 62% of the votes to become the president of India because she signifies the “firsts” of some important things in India.   After the fourth round of voting, Draupadi Murmu, 64, came out winning.  She comes from a humble background in a far-off village in the coastal state of Odisha. She was also considered one of the strong contenders for the post ahead of the 2017 presidential polls. But eventually, present President Ram Nath Kovind, a Dalit leader, was picked instead.

She is the second woman to be the President and the first tribal to hold the post.  Draupadi Murmu was born in Uparbeda Village in Odisha’s Mayurbhanj district in a Santali tribal family on June 20, 1958.

With humble beginnings, her father, Biranchi Narayan Tudu, and grandfather had served as sarpanch in their village. Murmu started out as a school teacher before entering state politics. She worked as an assistant professor at the Shri Aurobindo Integral Education and Research Institute, Rairangpur, and a junior assistant at the irrigation department Government of Odisha.

She joined the BJP in 1997 and was elected as the councillor of the Rairangpur Nagar Panchayat, going on to become the Chairperson of Rairangpur Nagar Panchayat in 2000. She also served as the national vice-president of BJP Scheduled Tribes Morcha.

During the BJP and Biju Janata Dal coalition government in Odisha, Murmu served as the Minister of State with independent charge for Commerce and Transport from March 2000 to August 2002 and Fisheries and Animal Resources Development from August 2002 to May 2004. Murmu served as the ninth Governor of Jharkhand from 2015 to 2021. She married Shyam Charan Murmu, a banker, who died in 2014.

The couple had two sons and a daughter. Her husband and sons died tragically. In 2009, one of Murmu’s sons — Laxman Murmu passed away, at the age of 25 years, he was found in an unconscious state in his bed. In 2012, Draupadi Murmu lost her second son in a road accident, and in 2014, her husband died of cardiac arrest.

Her painful tragedies made her lean towards spirituality, and she has been associated with the spiritual organization Brahma Kumaris. Itishree Murmu, her daughter works at a bank and is married to Ganesh Hembram, who is a rugby player. Murmu scored over 50 percent of the total vote value after three rounds of counting.  She becomes India’s youngest and first tribal president winning the presidential poll with over 64% votes.

 

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