As Centre’s envoy visits, Tripura party firm on demand of ‘Greater Tipraland’ state for tribals

Agartala: Tripura’s opposition Tipra Motha Party (TMP), which has been demanding ‘Greater Tipraland’ or a separate state for the tribals under Articles 2 and 3 of the Constitution, met the Centre’s envoy and advisor to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) A.K. Mishra here on Tuesday.

After the meeting, TMP supremo Pradyot Bikram Manikya Deb Barman said that his party is sticking to its ‘Greater Tipraland’ demand and “Centre should fulfil our demand and they should come out clearly with their views about our demand”.

“Pakistan tried to impose the Urdu language on the people of East Pakistan and then the language movement started (in 1948) leading to the creation of sovereign Bangladesh. Similarly, tribal language should be respected by all and we need our own script for the language of the indigenous people,” he told the media.

Mishra, who is also looking after the various tribal related issues and demands in Nagaland and Manipur, also held a meeting with Tripura Chief Minister Manik Saha on Monday night and discussed various aspects.

The TMP’s ‘Greater Tipraland’ demand, which is supported by the rulling BJP’s ally Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT), become a major issue in Tripura politics since 2021.

After the TMP wrested the power in the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) in April, the party intensified their agitation in support of their demand, which has been strongly opposing by the BJP, CPI-M led Left Front, Congress and Trinamool Congress and other parties.

The TMP leaders led by Deb Barman during the past several months held a series of meetings with Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, both Shah and Sarma, as well as the Tripura Chief Minister, rejected the its ‘Greater Tipraland’ demand, saying no division of Tripura would be done.

BJP’s ally IPFT has also been demanding to upgrade the TTAADC as a full-fledged state.

The TTAADC, which has a jurisdiction on over two-thirds of Tripura’s 10,491 sq km area and is home to over 12,16,000 people, of which around 84 per cent are tribals, is, in terms of its political significance, second most important constitutional body after the Tripura Assembly.

Political pundits said that both the TMP and the IPFT, to capitalise the tribal vote bank, raise tribal-centric demands like upgradation of the TTAADC as a separate for the tribals even though they fully aware that such demand would never be fulfilled due to obvious reasons. Both TMP and the IPFT in support of their separate state like demands organised agitations both in the state and in Delhi.

IANS

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