Presidential Election: Turmoil in Odisha Congress after party MLA votes for Draupadi Murmu

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Congress on Monday witnessed unease and turmoil after a party MLA from Cuttack-Barabati Mohammed Moquim voted for NDA’s candidate Draupadi Murmu in the Presidential election.

After casting his vote, Mohammed Moquim told ANI that he voted according to his conscience.
“I am a Congress MLA but I have voted for NDA’s Presidential candidate Droupadi Murmu. It’s my personal decision as I’ve listened to my heart which guided me to do something for the soil and that’s why voted for her,” he said.

Odisha Congress President Sarat Patnaik and CLP leader Narasingh Mishra held a meeting with party MLAs in state assembly after the voting.

There is a sense of unease in the party over Moquim not adhering to the party line.

Some party MLAs, who did not wish to be quoted, said Moquim should have gone with the party’s decision.

Patnaik said the Congress central leadership will be apprised of Moquim not voting according to the decision of the party.

“All Congress MLAs decided to vote for Opposition Candidate Yashwant Sinha. However, we came to know from the media that one of our MLAs has not voted for Sinha and he also made some statement before media. After examining his statement, the high command will be apprised of the issue and the action will be taken as per its decision,” he said.

Murmu hails from Odisha and has served as a minister in the state.

Meanwhile, in Assam, All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) MLA Karim Uddin Barbhuiya claimed that some Congress members had “cross-voted” in Presidential elections.

Speaking to ANI, Barbhuiya said the number of Congress MLAs who voted for Murmu could be 20.

“There was a Congress meeting yesterday, it was attended by only two-three MLAs. Only district president was there. What was the need for a meeting in Assembly? Clear that Congress is cross-voting, it may be 20 plus. You can see numbers on the day of result,” Barbhuiya said.

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) MLA from Gujarat Kandhal Jadeja said he voted for Murmu.

Speaking to reporters after casting his vote today, the lone NCP MLA in Gujarat said that he voted for the NDA presidential candidate. NCP has lent it support to Yashwant Sinha.

The polling for Presidential election concluded at 5 pm on Monday. The polling was held in a peaceful and orderly manner at all designated places. (ANI)

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