The Union minister also stated that the ‘BJP doesn’t discriminate among people when it comes to Government benefits’
Agartala, Nov 8 (PTI): Union minister Pratima Bhoumik claimed that the minority people are safe in the BJP-ruled Tripura and there is ‘no restriction’ on religious practices in the Northeastern State.
While addressing a programme on Sunday evening in Sepahijala district’s Bishalgarh, around 21 km from here, she slammed the CPI(M) for launching a campaign before the 2018 assembly elections that “minority people would be sent to Bangladesh had the BJP come to power in the state”.
“Minority people in Tripura are safe and there is no restriction on religious practices. The CPI(M) had launched propaganda in the last assembly polls four and half years ago that the people belonging to minority communities would be sent to Bangladesh, had the BJP won the State elections.
“The truth is that they are now free to perform their rituals,” Bhoumik, the Union minister of State for social justice and empowerment, said.
“The minority people are free to offer namaz or perform rituals, and there is no restriction on animal sacrifice in Tripura,” she said.
Responding to the Union minister’s allegation, CPI(M) State committee member Bhanu Lal Saha claimed that the “BJP has been following the RSS line which is anti-minority- be it in Uttar Pradesh or Tripura”.
“Since the State election is due next year, the Union minister is trying to woo Muslim voters,” said Saha who also represents the Bishalgarh Assembly constituency.
Bhoumik also stated that the “BJP doesn’t discriminate among people when it comes to Government benefits”.
She said the BJP Government has given due importance on women empowerment by making them financially independent.
The minister said the Central Government has sanctioned four lakh houses under the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana, and three lakh of them have already been constructed.
She alleged that the State had received only 58,874 dwelling houses under the housing programme till 2017.
“The number of women-run self-help groups has been increased to 4,000 and loans are being provided to SHGs to help their businesses,” she said.
The West Tripura MP, however, admitted that the saffron party’s performance in the 2018 assembly elections in Sepahijala was not satisfactory as it had won only three of nine constituencies of the district.
Despite the saffron surge across the State, the CPI(M) had won five seats in Sepahijala in 2018, and the BJP’s ally IPFT bagged one.
She hoped that the BJP, in the 2023 elections, will register “a big victory in the district” where minority votes are a deciding factor.
Bhoumik, who had, in 2018, contested against then chief minister Manik Sarkar in the Dhanpur Assembly seat, tasted defeat that time.