Thursday, June 13, 2024

Sofia Firdous becomes Odisha’s first Muslim woman MLA

Creating history in Odisha, Sofia Firdous has become the state’s first-ever Muslim woman to be elected as a Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA), emerging victorious in the recently concluded Assembly elections.

The 32-year-old Congress candidate scripted history by winning the Barabati-Cuttack seat with a margin of 8,001 votes, defeating BJP’s Purna Chandra Mahapatra

The 2024 Odisha Assembly elections witnessed a significant political shift, with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) securing a majority by winning 78 out of the 147 constituencies, ending the long-standing reign of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) government led by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik after 24 years. 

Her victory marked a significant milestone, as she became the first Muslim woman elected as an MLA in Odisha since Independence.

Simultaneously, in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections across the country, the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), comprising the BJP and its allies, claimed a majority. However, their margin was narrow, reflecting regional parties’ growing influence and opposition forces’ resurgence.

In the Lok Sabha elections, at least 24 Muslim candidates successfully secured seats in the lower house. Notably, TMC nominee and former India cricketer Yusuf Pathan secured a comfortable victory over Congress veteran Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury in the latter’s Baharampur bastion.

According to Associated Press, India has more than 4,000 lawmakers in state legislatures across 28 states and Muslim lawmakers hold roughly 6% of these seats.


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