New Delhi: Droupadi Murmu, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA)’s nominee won the Presidential Elections hands down, thus scripting history by becoming India’s first woman President, hailing from tribal community.
The victory was long anticipated, given the numbers of the BJP and allies in both houses as well as considerable clout in state Assemblies. As the Opposition wasn’t in mood to relent despite the fissures in its front, the NDA candidate fought and defeated Yashwant Sinha by a huge margin.
A total of 6,76,903 votes were polled in Murmu’s favour while Yashwant Sinha could manage 3,80,177 votes at the end of counting.
But, more than the defeat that is more concerning is the scale of cross-voting in Presidential elections. A large number of MLAs & MPs from the Opposition rank abandoned their own candidate and voted for Droupadi Murmu. As no party can issue whip in the Presidential polls, Droupadi Murmu received huge support from Opposition members also.
Reports suggest that moer than 100 legislators and 17 MPs cross-voted for the NDA candidate. Maximum cross-voting took place in Assam, Jharkhand & Madhya Pradesh Assemblies where legislators chose to ‘listen to their conscience’ & voted for the candidate representing India’s most backward class.
After the counting of votes, it emerged that almost 17 MPs cross-voted, defying parties’ stand on Opposition candidate Yashwant Sinha.
According to reports, Murmu received maximum votes from BJP-ruled Uttar Pradesh & Maharashtra Assemblies while Sinha got maximum backing from West Bengal & Tamil Nadu Assembly.
A leading daily reported that about 22 Opposition MLAs in Assam, 20 in MP, 6 in Bihar & Chhattisgarh, 4 from Goa & 10 from Gujarat cross-voted for Murmu.
Analysts believe that one reason that has worked in her favour is that she comes from tribal background and her persona & political journey has been overwhelmingly inspirational for everyone.
With this victory, Droupadi Murmu has scripted history. When she enters the President’s office on July 25, it will yet be another red-letter day in the world’s largest democracy.