Other States

TMC team visiting Tripura was under constant surveillance, alleges Derek O’Brien

TMC MP Derek O'Brien during the Monsoon Session of Parliament, in New Delhi, Wednesday, July 28, 2021.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Trinamool Congress leader Derek O’Brien on Thursday lashed out at the BJP for introducing “Gujarat model” in Tripura to repress Opposition parties. He also alleged that he and his party leaders including two Cabinet Ministers were under placed under constant surveillance in Agartala.

The TMC floor leader in the Rajya Sabha was speaking to newsmen at a private hotel here shortly after he arrived from New Delhi. He lambasted the State’s BJP-led coalition government for what he called the detention of election strategist Prashanth Kishor’s 23 I-Pac employees whom they contracted to conduct a survey.

Mr. O’Brien, Ministers Moloy Ghatak and Bratya Basu, and former MP Ritabrata Banerjee arrived in Agartala in the backdrop of the huge controversy surrounding the alleged confinement at a hotel.

“The detention of 23 young men and women established the fact that the BJP has set up Gujarat model in the State,” Mr. O’Brien said.

He claimed that at least 100 police personnel were deployed for surveillance on the visiting TMC leaders. “Are we terrorists,” he asked.

He said there is no functioning committee of the TMC in Tripura and announcements on the organisation issues could be made by general secretary Abhishek Banerjee who will be arriving here on Friday.

Welfare and development packages

Mr. O’Brien said the TMC will become strong in the State as people are ready for a change. He assured that his party would reach out to the people with welfare and development packages that were successfully implemented in West Bengal after winning in the Assembly elections slated for early 2023.

To a question, he said all Opposition parties are united in the demand for a judicial probe to identify “who hired Israeli spyware Pegasus to hack telephones of many individuals”.

The I-Pac staff on Thursday obtained anticipatory bail from the court of West Tripura Chief Judicial Magistrate after they were booked under Section 188 of the IPC (disobedience to order promulgated by the public servant) for allegedly flouting restrictions imposed to check the spread of COVID-19.

Interestingly, Tripura Congress president and advocate Pijush Biswas and his legal team moved the bail application in court.

The I-Pac team arrived here on Wednesday last to carry out a survey to explore the prospects for the Trinamool Congress. Members of the team travelled across the State before the police intervened.


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Printable version | Sep 18, 2021 10:45:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/tmc-team-visiting-tripura-was-under-constant-surveillance-alleges-derek-obrien/article35605293.ece

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