Agartala, December 19, 2022: Citing the ‘Greater Tipraland’ as the democratic right of indigenous people, the President of Tripura Pradesh Trinamool Congress – Pijush Kanti Biswas on Monday said that this demand would not have existed, if “direct funding” and “special status” were ensured to the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC).
Addressing a press conference at TMC state headquarters here in Agartala city on Monday noon, Biswas said “The demand of ‘Tipraland’ is the demand of indigenous people. Raising the demand is their democratic right. Direct funding and special status to the TTAADC administration is the need of the hour.”
“Personally, I feel that there is a necessity for special status and all benefits except police should be given directly. Then the indigenous people may not go for raising such demand. The government should give them special status”, he added.
He claimed that the ruling party and the government are surviving by showing fear to the common masses. He also slammed BJP and the government for neglecting the indigenous people living in the hills of the state during their five-year regime.
“Yesterday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi campaigned for BJP ahead of assembly polls using government machinery and funds meant of public welfare. However, the presence of indigenous people was negligible and the reason is that the tribal inhabitants of Tripura have an essence that they are being neglected by the people. They also experienced that the people living in plains are enjoying all kinds of facilities whereas people especially indigenous tribes in the hilly terrain of the state are deprived”, he said.
Citing certain instances, Biswas said “In ADC areas, there is no development. People have to carry patients for several kilometres to reach primary health centres (PHCs). Water from streams and hills are consumed by them. However, some people are taking advantage of those sufferings. Ultimately, a section of indigenous people are bound to join extremist groups in order to get the family relieved from starvation.”
Clarifying the intention of demanding ‘Greater Tipraland’, TMC state president said “Tripura government has been depriving the ADC. There has been a demand for separate state as they have been deprived for a long period. Facilities like healthcare institutions, educational institutions, etc are enjoyed by the people living in plains whereas people living in hills i.e. ADC areas find them as if they have committed crime. The demand for separate state wasn’t there earlier. People have to trek down the hill for about 500-600 feet to fetch water from streams. Proper housing facilities are also not available for them.”
Claiming that PM Modi is fooling the common people, Biswas alleged “Before the arrival of BJP-led government in 2018, various projects were declared and works were started. But now, they are reaping the credits. Agartala-Akhaura Railway Link project was also declared during the previous Congress-led UPA government’s regime.”
Apart from this, a TMC worker Sanjib Malakar of Kamalpur in Dhalai district met with an accident and died while returning home after doing party-related activities. AITC will give Rs 1 lakh as financial assistance to the party worker’s family.