Draupadi Murmu’s Election as President is Historical and Far-Reaching!

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  • The National Democratic Alliance’s candidate Droupadi Murmu’s election as the President of India is not only historical for its significance in the overall political and social landscape of the country but also yet again highlights the unique vibrancy of our democratic process recognized the world over. There was no doubt whatsoever about Murmu’s victory as the Bharatiya Janata Party-led NDA had comfortable numbers to ensure the candidature of Adivasi leader eventually reaches Rashtrapati Bhavan.  She achieved the mission with consummate ease speaks volumes about the overwhelming support extended to her from the ruling dispensation as well as some from the opposition ranks.

PC: Reuters

  • Murmu’s journey is truly inspirational and worthy of emulation for the sheer grit and determination espoused along the way. Her long journey to Rashtrapati Bhavan is sprinkled with the story of overcoming adverse circumstances and personal setbacks.  Just as her political career hit a high note after terms as legislator and Odisha minister, she faced heart-shattering personal tragedies losing both her sons and husband in quick succession.  Of course, the stint as Jharkhand governor brought her to the limelight, especially when she returned two bills amending tenancy laws passed by the Raghubar Das government, which had raised fears of alienation of tribal lands.
  • Note that India electing its first Adivasi president is also a tribute to how it is constantly democratizing in terms of diversity in political representation. Remember, scheduled tribes form nearly 9% of the population, as such, a president from the community should have emerged much sooner to don an important position.  Thus, BJP deserves credit for recognizing this lapse and rectifying it by nominating a strong, deserving woman for India’s top, though largely ceremonial, constitutional post.  Also, Murmu’s candidature has considerably helped BJP politically by sowing disarray in opposition ranks and endearing the party to tribal belts, pan-India.

PC: India Today Web Desk

  • Trust BJP to always throw a surprise or two by shrewdly upholding the social-engineering optics much to the chagrin of the opposition ranks. The cross-spectrum political recognition accorded to Murmu should also help in addressing the Adivasi community’s developmental backwardness too with renewed vigour. Shockingly, Murmu’s village being electrified now despite her long public life reflects the magnitude of this challenge staring at the administration even after 75 years of independence.  Inherent in this is a geographical challenge too because Adivasi heartlands in every state are far from state capitals and located in forested, hilly, or remote areas.
  • Despite the Union Government conceiving schemes like the Aspirational Districts Programme, the federal system entails state chief ministers to essay a more active key role in uplifting the Adivasis. Given unequal wealth distribution and lack of opportunities, provisioning quality education can be a great leveller for India’s poor.  This being the case, why not focus on Adivasi children a chance to succeed in the coming days by ensuring adequate opportunities vis-à-vis education.  For now, let’s celebrate Murmu’s triumph in overcoming all odds stackied against her.