Congress MLA in Odisha Casts Vote in Favour of NDA Prez Poll Nominee Murmu

Congress MLA Mohammed Moquim created a flutter in political circles on Monday by announcing that he has voted in favour of NDA presidential candidate Droupadi Murmu as she happened to be a daughter of Odisha.

Immediately after exercising his franchise in the Assembly, the legislator from Cuttack-Barabati assembly segment said he went by his conscience call.

“I am an Odia; I voted in favour of Droupadi Murmu as she is a daughter of Odisha. I went by my conscience. MLAs cannot be prevented from listening to their conscience and I’ve listened to my heart which guided me to do something for the soil and that’s why voted for her,” Moquim stated. The Congress lawmaker also said that he had received phone calls from several eminent persons, including those staying abroad, requesting him to support the daughter of the soil. People of Odisha will support my move. Murmu’s victory will make me proud,” Moquim explained.

Asked if he was under pressure from the ruling BJD, which has also pledged its support to Murmu, Moquim said, “It is my personal decision… there is no other reason.” Meanwhile, Congress Legislature Party leader Narasingha Mishra said all MLAs of the grand old party, including Moquim, had agreed to vote for joint opposition nominee Yashwant Sinha.

Condemning Moquim’s change of stance, Congress MLAs S S Saluja and Taraprasad Bahinipati said the Cuttack-Barabati MLA must have been unhappy in the party. “Everyone should have toed the party line. Many meetings were held and all MLAs of the party had given assurance that they would vote for Yashwant Sinha. We will bring the matter to the notice of party high command for necessary action,” Saluja maintained.

OPCC president Sarat Pattnayak, too, said that he would apprise the party high command of this latest development. I cannot say for sure what exactly prompted him to go against the party line, he added.

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