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Fledgling TIPRA changes political equations in Tripura

Pradyot Manikya, who led the newly formed Tipraha Indigenous Progressive Regional Alliance (TIPRA), to victory, grabbing 18 out of the 28 seats, in Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council elections.  

“The results of the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council elections is a vindication of my stand,” said Pradyot Manikya, who led the newly formed Tipraha Indigenous Progressive Regional Alliance (TIPRA), to victory, grabbing 18 out of the 28 seats.

The victory comes 19 months after Mr. Manikya quit the Congress over differences with the party’s stand on the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the National Register for Citizens (NRC). While the Congress was opposed to the NRC, Mr. Manikya, who was then president of the Tripura Pradesh Congress Committee, went to the Supreme Court seeking an NRC in the State. The Congress, he said, also wanted him to go slow on its opposition to the CAA.

“When I quit Congress I was very hurt to see many senior leaders allege that I will soon join BJP. I met Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and told her that I am not joining any party and that I will ensure BJP’s defeat in the Tribal council polls. And today, I stand vindicated,” Mr. Manikya told The Hindu.

Left, Cong. decimated

TIPRA was formed just two months before the Council elections. The BJP is the second largest party, in the Council with nine seats. It’s ally, the Indigenous People’s Party of Tripura (IPFT), however, failed to win a single seat. The Left Front which held the Council since May 2015 did not win a single seat and neither did the Congress.

Fledgling TIPRA changes political equations in Tripura
 

Many political observers believe that the Tripura Tribal Council polls could have influenced the outcome of Assam Assembly polls had it preceded it. In Assam, the anti-CAA voices were scattered with many trying to take ownership of the movement with an overall impact of making the issue electorally less relevant. “Tripura and Assam share the anti-CAA sentiment. Unfortunately in Assam, there is no single leader to rally the issue,” Mr. Manikya said.

The CAA cannot be allowed to be implemented, giving the Hindu Bengalis settled in northeast a free run and squeezing out the indigenous population, he said. “It is a matter of survival of the indigenous people, protecting their interests, language, culture and identity,” Mr Manikya stressed.

While he completely rules out rejoining the Congress in future, he feels that his former party needs a strong president. “It is one of the oldest political parties and without a full time president to lead the party, it will just wither away,” he added.

For now Mr Manikya and TIPRA have their eyes set for the next assembly elections which is two years away in 2023.

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Printable version | May 11, 2021 5:24:59 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/fledgling-tipra-changes-political-equations-in-tripura/article34296814.ece

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