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Jungle raj in Tripura: Manik Sarkar after meeting governor over poll violence

The Opposition leader appeals to people to become vocal, come out on the streets to protest against violence.

Opposition leader Manik Sarkar and other legislative party members address a press conference at Agartala.

The Opposition CPM’s MLAs met Tripura Governor Satyadeo Narain Arya and director-general of police on Thursday and listed 150 alleged incidents of political violence that occurred during the recently concluded bypoll process.

Speaking to reporters, Opposition leader Manik Sarkar, who led a delegation to the governor, said, “Whatever is going on since before the bypolls till date is jungle raj. We have submitted a memorandum to the governor and sought his intervention to arrest all miscreants backed by the BJP and take necessary steps.”

“The governor is ill. We were informed through his secretary that the governor said he would place the Left delegation’s concerns before the state government and ask it to ensure that appropriate steps are taken,” the former chief minister added.

The CPM veteran said the Left MLAs will wait for some time to see what steps the gubernatorial head takes. However, he said Governor Arya’s predecessor was also approached during his tenure on similar cases of political violence but nothing happened despite assurances.

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Senior CPM leader MLA Bhanulal Saha, who led a delegation to the DGP, said the police chief initially tried to evade responsibility but later promised to investigate all incidents of violence.

On the DGP’s evading responsibility for the cases not reported to the police, Sarkar said the attitude was objectionable. “MLA Bhanulal Saha himself was attacked. He complained to the police. What happened? Many people do not complain out of fear of a political backlash. They (police) should have a minimum sense of duty. This is not right. We want the police to take appropriate action on criminals as per law without considering their political background,” Sarkar said.

Sarkar also appealed to the people to become vocal and come out on the streets. He said many people resisted intimidation and cast their votes despite many odds. “This is a silver lining. People will not tolerate things any more. Put pressure on the government collectively to restore democracy, save the Constitution and rule of law along with fighting for work and food,” he said.

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The Left Front leadership met Chief Secretary Kumar Alok on Wednesday and sought his intervention over the post-poll violence. Similar allegations of violence were made by Congress MLA and former minister Sudip Roy Barman, who wrote to Chief Minister Manik Saha on Wednesday, seeking action against political violence and compensation for the affected families.

Bypolls were held in the Agartala, Town Bardowali, Surma and Jubarajnagar Assembly segments in West Tripura, Dhalai and North Tripura districts on June 23. The BJP emerged victorious in three of them when the results were announced on June 26. The Congress won one seat as Barman retained what has been his home turf for the past 24 years, Agartala. The CPM lost the Jubarajnagar seat, which it had held for the past 30 years.

First published on: 30-06-2022 at 17:30 IST
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