India, the country slated to have the world's largest population by the end of the year, and a member of BRICS, Thursday announced the name of the person to become the next head of state.
The 64-year-old Draupadi Murmu was proclaimed as the country's 15th president and the successor to the incumbent Ram Nath Kovind, a Hindu nationalist leader who has held the post since 2017. She is to be sworn in on July 25.
Council of States Secretary-General (Upper House Speaker) Pramod Chandra Mody formally announced that the winning candidate had received 2,824 votes out of 4,754.
Murmu is to become India's first female president from a tribal community and the second woman to hold the country's highest office. In an official statement,
Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Murmu at her residence in New Delhi to congratulate her on her victory.
Modi stressed on social media that his country had made history as a daughter of India hailing from a tribal community born in a remote part of eastern India has been elected our president.
The Prime Minister also highlighted Murmu's life, her early struggles, her rich service, and her exemplary success.
She has become a ray of hope for our citizens, especially the poor, marginalized and downtrodden, Modi noted.
Murmu was nominated by Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and received around 64% of the votes cast by state and federal lawmakers Monday. Her closest rival was a former BJP member, Yashwant Sinha, who quit the party over his disagreements with the Modi government.
A member of the Santal ethnic minority, one of India’s largest tribal groups, Murmu started her career as a school teacher in the eastern state of Odisha before moving on to become a state lawmaker and a governor of the neighboring state of Jharkhand.
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