Tripura’s ruling ally Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) on Tuesday announced that they would be contesting alone in forthcoming Lok Sabha polls in the state.
Speaking to reporters, IPFT spokesperson Mangal Debbarma said his party recently formed a five-member committee headed by party supremo NC Debbarma.
“We have formed a committee for candidate selection for the Lok Sabha elections. We shall select candidates for both Lok Sabha elections from the state soon”, Mangal said.
He added that IPFT general secretary Mevar Kumar Jamatia who is also minister for tribal welfare in Tripura is on board the candidate selection committee.
The Committee would discuss modalities and nuances of IPFT’s Parliament election campaign. It would also screen prospective candidates, he added.
When asked why IPFT is not contesting in alliance with BJP while running the state government in coalition, Debbarma said BJP didn’t discuss anything on Lok Sabha polls with the tribal party though they were previously approached.
Mangal informed that IPFT leaders submitted a memorandum to BJP president Amit Shah during a visit to Agartala on January 05 this year.
“We submitted a memorandum to him. It had the issue of Lok Sabha election in it as well. HE assured us to look into it after returning to New Delhi. But he has not informed anything till now. So, we were forced to take this decision”, Mangal said.
In his reaction, BJP spokesperson Dr. Ashok Sinha said, “Everybody is free to take their own decision. However, such decisions are taken in Delhi, not here”.
BJP and IPFT combined to win 44 seats in the 60 member state legislative assembly in February 18 elections last year. IPFT was allotted 9 tickets, among which 8 candidates emerged victorious.