The Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) has announced an indefinite sit-in-demonstration at Khumulwng, headquarters of the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) from January 6, seeking to exempt Tripura from Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and granting separate area for tribals.
“The main demand of our agitation will be granting Tipraland or a separate state in areas under the TTAADC. Our agitation will also demand exemption of the state from CAA,” said IPFT spokesperson Mangal Debbarma.
The IPFT, which is part of the ruling alliance led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), was floated in 2009 with the demand of ‘Tipraland’ – a separate state for tribals. The party laid off the demand of statehood before the elections as its ally BJP did not agree to divide Tripura on ethnic lines. However, the tribal party has raised its demand again and had held a series of agitations, going against its saffron partner in government, in the recent past.
The state recently witnessed agitations against Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) and CAA. A series of strikes were called in Tripura by different political parties since December 2. Internet services were suspended twice over these protests.
Joint Movement Against CAB (JMACAB), a forum of three tribal political parties and social organizations, held ‘Tripura Bandh’ for three days till December 11 this year, protesting against the legislation. After the Bill was passed in the Parliament, their leaders met Home Minister Amit Shah at New Delhi.
However, Indigenous Nationalist Party of Twipra (INPT), a partner of JMACAB, has said it feels their plea of exempting Tripura from CAA wasn’t given proper heed and said they are considering resuming agitation.
“Home Minister Shah assured us to look into our concerns over CAA and assured to get back to us. We are still waiting for his response. But we can’t wait for eternity. We shall launch our movement soon again,” INPT general secretary Jagadish Debbarma said.
Earlier in January, police action on anti-CAB protesters at Madhabbari in West Tripura left six injured with bullet wounds. As per CAA, Tripura ADC areas would be exempted from the law along with several other autonomous councils of NE region.
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