AGARTALA, Feb 2 (PTI): The opposition Tipra Motha on Thursday said it will contest the assembly elections in Tripura without any alliance.
Tipra Motha president Bijoy Kumar Hrangkhawl told PTI that the party is confident of winning the February 16 election on its own.
“We are going to fight the elections without any alliance, and on the demand of Greater Tipraland for the upliftment of the socio-economic condition of the people. We are confident of winning the elections,” he said.
The party, floated by the scion of the erstwhile royal family of Tripura Pradyot Debbarma in 2021, will fight the elections in 42 of the 60 seats.
“Our leader Pradyot Debbarma is scheduled to return to the state on Saturday and hold a meeting with party leaders and candidates to finalise the campaign strategy,” Hrangkhawl said.
Within months of its formation, Tipra Motha won the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) elections, trouncing the ruling BJP and IPFT. The council administers two-third geographical area of the state.
Terming the autonomous district council as a toothless body, Hrangkhawl said the party wants a ‘Greater Tipraland’ or a Union Territory with legislative power to be carved out.
“Without legislative powers, the tribal council or whatever body is created will be meaningless for the overall development of the people living in hills,” he added.
Tipra Motha was earlier in talks with the CPI(M)-led Left Front and Congress for an alliance to bring on to one platform the opposition votes. It also reached out to BJP ally Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT) for uniting the tribal votes.
The announcement of going solo in the elections marks that the seat-sharing talks failed. However, it has not fielded any candidates against CPI(M) state secretary Jitendra Choudhury, who is contesting from Sabroom in South Tripura, and Congress state president Birajit Sinha who is fighting from the Kailashahar constituency in North Tripura district.
In a Facebook post, Debbarma said, “If you believe in yourself everything is possible! This is the last stand we have to make as one! Fight now my warriors, this is ours to win.”
He also announced that former minister Mevar Jamatia will not be contesting the elections, but campaigning across the state for the party.
“Some leaders have to sacrifice contesting elections this time to campaign for the movement across the state. I am happy Mevar has listened to me and has chosen the cause over personal glory,” he said.
Debbarma alleged that the BJP was trying to pressurise Tipra Motha’s Chandipur candidate Ranjan Sinha to withdraw his nomination.
The allegation was made after a group of BJP leaders led by state minister Ram Prasad Paul went to Sinha’s residence. However, Sinha was not home.
Sinha joined the Tipra Motha after being denied a nomination by the BJP from the seat in Unakoti district.
The votes for the Tripura assembly elections will be counted on March 2.