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CPI (M)-BJP gearing up for show of strength in Tripura

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  28 March 2017 12:00 AM GMT


AGARTALA, March 27: The ruling CPI(M) and the Bharatiya Jata Party are gearing up for a show of strength in Tripura as destroying all previous equations the polarisation of political forces in the state politics is sharpening between the two parties.

The CPI (M) is currently conducting a month long campaign in support of their five point charter of demands which will culmite in a central rally on March 31 at Astabal ground in Agartala.

The BJP had an impressive rally in this same venue on March 10 which among others was addressed by Assam Chief Minister Sarbanda Sonwal and party general secretary Ram Madhab.

This was one of the biggest rallies BJP ever had in Tripura and has successfully dissemited the massage that the saffron party is emerging as the main challenger to the ruling party in the State.

The CPI(M) officially claim that the proposed rally on March 31 is one of their regular political programmes but sources in the party said they are employing all means to make it a massive one to overshadow the impact BJP had made.

All along Tripura politics remained polarized between the Left and the Congress and this is for the first time the BJP emerged as the main challenger to CPI (M).

Results of by elections of five assembly constituencies Surma, Prataparh, Amarpur, Barjala and Khowai held during last two years in the state bears the testimony. Barring Khowai in all the rest four BJP emerged second leaving Congress far behind.

This change in the state’s political scerio became possible due to a vertical split in Congress when six of its 10 MLA’s joined Trimool Congress. However, the newly found strength of the Mamata Banerjee’s party was short lived and leaders and workers in large number switched over their loyalties to BJP.

Apart from general workers the TMC deserters include the president of the party’s co-ordition committee Ratan Chakraborty and the former party president Surajit Datta, both ministers during the Congress government.

A sizable number of party’s State committee members and office bearers of various levels followed them. According to party sources the vice president of the TMC Mukul Roy is rushing to Agartala on April 5 in a damage control mission but how far he will succeed is still a big question.

The recent bickering in the Indigenous Peoples’ Front of Twipra (IPFT), the biggest tribal based regiol parties in the state, has further brightened the prospect of BJP’s emerging as a major challenger to CPI (M) in the State.

A dissident group of the IPFT recently announced that the party president N C Debbarma has been expelled on discipliry ground. Within three days N C Debbarma after a meeting of the party’s central executives expelled seven dissident leaders including Budhu Debbarma, Aghor Debbarma, Binoy Debbarma and Rajeswer Debbarma.

Both the factions’ hurled aspersions against each other but sources said the main tussle was on the party’s relation with BJP and the CPI (M) in the coming assembly election scheduled to be held early next year. None of these factions has so far expressed any desire of abandoning the regiol party but observers feel the newly found situation will be of great help for BJP to have an inroad in the tribal areas of the State where at present its presence is minimal only.

The CPI (M) has a good support base among the tribal and all other tiol parties hardly have any presence among them. The Congress for last three decades depended only on regiol parties for tribal votes but the BJP this time announced that they will go it alone.

Tribal constitutes 31 per cent of state’s total population and 20 of the total 60 seats in the State assembly are reserved for them. So tribal votes play a very crucial role in the State’s power politics.

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