BJP names Droupadi Murmu, Oppn picks Yashwant Sinha as presidential candidates


PTI, Jun 22, 2022, 8:02 AM IST

Droupadi Murmu (L) and Yashwant Sinha

Battle lines were drawn on Tuesday for the July 18 presidential election with the BJP-led NDA naming Droupadi Murmu, a tribal leader from Odisha, as its candidate while former Union minister Yashwant Sinha was declared as a joint nominee by major opposition parties, including the Congress, the NCP and the TMC.

BJP president J P Nadda announced the candidature of 64-year-old Murmu, former Jharkhand governor, following a meeting of the party’s parliamentary board, hours after opposition parties in a joint statement named Sinha, who was earlier with the BJP but fell out with the Modi-Shah leadership and joined the Trinamool Congress in March 2021.

Murmu (64), a former Jharkhand governor, will be the first tribal woman to occupy the top constitutional post if she is elected, a strong possibility as numbers are stacked in favour of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA).

With her nomination, the BJP is sending out a significant political message after elevating a Dalit, Ram Nath Kovind, to the top post five years back.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Murmu has devoted her life to serving society and expressed confidence that she will be a ”great President”.

”Droupadi Murmu Ji has devoted her life to serving society and empowering the poor, downtrodden as well as the marginalised. She has rich administrative experience and had an outstanding gubernatorial tenure. I am confident she will be a great President of our nation.

”Millions of people, especially those who have experienced poverty and faced hardships, derive great strength from the life of Smt. Droupadi Murmu Ji. Her understanding of policy matters and compassionate nature will greatly benefit our country,” Modi tweeted.

Considered soft-spoken and affable, the leader, who comes from Mayurbhanj, one of the more backward regions of Odisha, has held various positions in the party, rising through the ranks, and was a minister in the state when the BJP was in alliance with the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD).

The BJD, which stayed away from the opposition meet, welcomed the announcement.

”Congratulations Smt DraupadiMurmu on being announced as candidate of NDA for the country’s highest office. I was delighted when Hon’ble PM Narendra Modi ji discussed this with me. It is indeed a proud moment for people of Odisha,” BJD chief and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik tweeted.

Murmu said she was surprised as well as delighted by the announcement.

Incidentally, her name was also doing the rounds for the BJP’s likely choice for the top constitutional post in 2017.

As a tribal woman candidate of the ruling combine, her candidature may persuade many regional parties, not aligned to either the NDA or the opposition, to back her, BJP sources said. Even some opposition parties will not be seen to be opposing her, they added.

Opposition leaders, who gathered at the Parliament annex for the meeting convened by NCP chief Sharad Pawar to decide on a common candidate for the much-discussed presidential election, unanimously agreed on Sinha’s name.

”He is eminently qualified to uphold the secular and democratic character of the Indian Republic and its Constitutional values,” the joint statement said.

The veteran politician, who has been an MP from Jharkhand, ”stepped aside” from the Trinamool Congress before the announcement of his name and will file his nomination papers on June 27.

”We regret the Modi government made no serious effort to have consensus on a presidential candidate,” Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said reading out the statement. He noted that the initiative to have a consensus candidate for the highest office of the Republic should have been taken by the government.

”We are happy to announce that we have unanimously chosen Yashwant Sinha as the common candidate of the opposition parties for the presidential election, which will take place on July 18, 2022,” Ramesh said.

The leaders also announced that a committee has been formed to steer Sinha’s presidential campaign.

Sinha, who has been vocal on a range of issues, is in his 80s. Pawar told reporters that he has personally spoken to a cross-section of leaders from various parties. These included Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal from the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Telangana’s K Chandrashekar Rao from the TRS who stayed away from the meeting.

”We will also try to convince the BJD and YSR Congress,” Pawar said when asked whether they are on board.

The parties that attended the meeting included Congress, NCP, TMC, CPI, CPI-M, Samajwadi Party, National Conference, AIMIM, RJD, and AIUDF.

Five regional parties considered nonaligned – TRS, BJD, AAP, SAD, and YSRCP – stayed away. The ruling BJP-led combine has over 48 percent vote share in the electoral college to pick the new president, and its candidate has a clear advantage over the opposition.

Reading out the joint statement, Ramesh said the parties have appealed to all political parties to support Sinha as president so the country could have a worthy ‘Rashtrapati’ elected unopposed. His party colleague Mallikarjun Kharge said Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had called him and a few other leaders to ask whether they had a name for the top constitutional post.

”This was just for the sake of contacting, This cannot be termed a serious effort,” Kharge said.

Sinha’s name came up after Pawar, Gopalkrishna Gandhi and Farooq Abdullah declined the opposition’s offer to be their joint candidate for the top post. The presidential election would be held on July 18 to elect a successor to incumbent Ram Nath Kovind and the result would be out on July 21

Udayavani is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel and stay updated with the latest news.

Top News

Ex-Andhra Pradesh CM Jagan Mohan Reddy, two IPS officers booked in ‘attempt to murder’ case

Karnataka BJP leaders on way to protest against MUDA ‘scam’ detained in Bengaluru

SC grants interim bail to Arvind Kejriwal in excise policy linked money laundering case

Valmiki Corporation scam: ED detains former minister B Nagendra

65 people, including seven Indians, believed to be missing after landslide in Nepal: Media reports

Congress, BJP spar after viral clip shows huge crowd of aspirants for job interview in Gujarat

Guthigaru: ‘Drunk’ cops arrive to chase away drunkards

Related Articles More

Diversion of SC, ST fund in Karnataka exposes Rahul’s double standards: BJP

Ex-Andhra Pradesh CM Jagan Mohan Reddy, two IPS officers booked in ‘attempt to murder’ case

What is PM Modi’s position on ‘billionaire tax’, what will be India’s stand at G20, asks Cong

SC collegium recommends appointment of chief justices in 7 HCs

Allowing MLA Gaikwad to vote in Maharashtra council polls is misuse of power: Raut

MUST WATCH

Kalaripayattu Meenakshi Amma

President Droupadi Murmu

Information about ridge gourd crop

Surya kumar yadav

Back Pain : Symptoms and Causes


Latest Additions

Diversion of SC, ST fund in Karnataka exposes Rahul’s double standards: BJP

Ex-Andhra Pradesh CM Jagan Mohan Reddy, two IPS officers booked in ‘attempt to murder’ case

MLA Harish Poonja accuses Congress government of engaging in politics of hatred

Uppinangadi: Tailor bewildered by rumours of him winning Rs 1 Crore lottery

What is PM Modi’s position on ‘billionaire tax’, what will be India’s stand at G20, asks Cong

Thanks for visiting Udayavani

You seem to have an Ad Blocker on.
To continue reading, please turn it off or whitelist Udayavani.