AGARTALA — The Tipra Motha Party (TMP), which is now Tripura’s main opposition party and governs the key Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC), on Monday threatened to launch an agitation if the BJP government continues to deprive the autonomous body and does not hold elections to the Village Councils.
TMP supremo Pradyot Bikram Manikya Deb Barman said that the party would continue to fight for its core demand of “Greater Tipra Land” for the tribals, who according to him are deprived of basic facilities in education, health and all other areas.
“Various elections including the Assembly polls are being held in Tripura, but the BJP government does not conduct the Village Council elections in the TTAADC areas.
“Non-holding of the Village Council election has severely affected the developmental and welfare works in TTAADC areas,” Deb Barman told the media.
The elections to the Village Councils (equivalent to gram panchayat), originally scheduled to take place in March 2021, was also being delayed even after the clear directions by the Tripura High Court.
“We have once again sought intervention of the High Court to conduct the Village Councils elections,” he said.
Accompanied by TMP President Bijoy Kumar Hrangkhawal, opposition leader
Animesh Debbarma and TTAADC Chairman Jagadhish Debbarma, Deb Barman said
that 160 primary schools in TTAADC areas are run by a single teacher.
Roads, water supply, health facilities, and other developmental activities remained standstill in the TTAADC areas due to non release of due funds to the autonomous body for several months, he said.
“The BJP has been trying to undertake divide and rule policy in Tripura. The BJP has been demanding imposition of President’s rule in West Bengal, but over 140 people died and scores of people injured in the ethnic violence in Manipur, why is the President’s rule not imposed in the state,” the TMP leader asked.
He cautioned that what happened in Manipur would not be allowed in Tripura and added that his party would also not be allowed to break the unity in the state in the name of language, dialect, script, and religion.
Before and after the BJP led government assumed office on March 8 for the second time after the February’s assembly polls, the saffron party invited TMP to join the ministry and three ministerial berths were still kept vacant.
A two-day (Saturday-Sunday) Plenary Session of the TMP was held in the TTAADC headquarters at Khumulwng and Deb Barman relinquished the post of TMP Chairman and announced that as a member of the party would continue to fight for the rights and welfare of the tribals, who constitute one third of Tripura’s four million population.
Throwing a challenge to all the national parties — the BJP, the CPI-M, the Congress
and the Trinamool Congress — the TMP, the first tribal-based party in Tripura since 1952, emerged as the principal opposition in the state in the February Assembly polls and is now the main stakeholder of the vote share of tribals, who always played vital role in electoral politics of Tripura.
The TMP, after capturing the politically important TTAADC in April 2021, has been demanding elevation of the areas of the autonomous body by granting a ‘Greater Tipraland State’ or a separate state status under Articles 2 and 3 of the Constitution. — IANS