25 Jul 2022

School remembers "Teacher Droupadi Murma" as she takes oath 1400 km away

In President Droupadi Murmu's speech to Parliament after he was sworn in, a school in Odisha's Mayurbhanj district – more than 1,400 km from the swearing-in ceremony venue – got special mention.
About 25 years ago, before her political career began, President Murmu was a teacher at the Sri Aurobindo Integral Education and Research Center in Rairangpur. Between 1994 and 1997, she taught all subjects at the school and took no salary.

Elected councilor of Rairangpur Nagar Panchayat in 1997, she began a political journey that saw her hold various administrative positions and paved the way to the highest office in the land.

Jubilation and pride filled the school as she was sworn in as the first female tribal and second female president of the country.

Ravindra Patnaik, president of the school committee, said, "Her Excellency Madam President Droupadi Murmu taught here from 1994 to 1997 and her politics started from there."

Mr. Patnaik said that Droupadi Murmu did not take any salary while teaching as a teacher, adding that she was greatly influenced by the philosophy of nationalist Sri Aurobindo and Mirra Alfassa, who was known to her followers as the Mother. "She always says that whatever she has become, it is because of the philosophy of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo," he said.

Students of the school said they want President Murmu to visit the school again. "We heard her speech on TV.

"We are very happy that she is the president now," said another student.

Pramila Swain, the principal of the school, said that honesty and punctuality were the motto of Droupadi Murmu's life, including her time at the school. "She was very patient with the children. She hid a box of chocolates on the table in the classroom and gave them to the students who answered the questions correctly," said the principal.

The school is all set to hold its 150th anniversary celebrations and students and teachers are hoping the lady president will attend the event.

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