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Tripura Elections: Left Parties, Congress Hold Big Joint Rally Against Pre-Poll Political Violence

Former Tripura CM and Left leader Manik Sarkar said 25 party cadres have been killed while thousands suffered since the BJP-IPFT coalition have come to power.

Image Courtesy: PTI

Delhi: For the first time in Tripura, the Congress and the Communist Party of India (Marxist)-led Left parties on Saturday held a big joint rally in Agartala with demands to eliminate pre-election violence and ensure fair and transparent elections in Tripura. The two parties are considered rivals. Tripura will go to Assembly elections on February 16.

After the Election Commission announced the poll schedule on January 18, several violent incidents took place in different parts of Tripura, according to Northeast Now. In one incident in Majlishpur in west Tripura, an attack was allegedly carried out under a minister's leadership on the national leader of Congress and others who joined a peaceful programme, according to the CPI-M.

Four-time Tripura Chief Minister and CPI-M polit bureau member Manik Sarkar, party state secretary Jitendra Chowdhury, Tripura state Congress President Birajit Sinha, AICC Tripura in-charge Ajoy Kumar, Congress MLA Sudip Roy Barman, his father and former Chief Minister Samir Ranjan Barman, and several other leaders took part in Saturday's rally.

The rally saw participation from opposition Congress and Left Front leaders, members and workers. Thousands took to the streets with banners and placards that read ‘My Vote, My Right’, ‘Stop Poll Violence’, etc., along with thousands of national flags.

Following the rally, leaders of the seven participant parties — Congress, CPI-M, CPI, RSP, Forward Bloc, CPI (ML) and Tripura People’s Party -- met Tripura Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Gitte Kirankumar Dinkarrao, and senior police officials, the Northeast Now reported.

After the meeting, CPI-M Tripura state secretary Jitendra Chowdhury told the media that despite the full Election Commission visiting the state last week, people are witnessing that the BJP leaders and ministers are challenging the EC's commitment with organised violence.

The same day, Tripura Leader of the Opposition Manik Sarkar also shared a detailed account of the alleged violence and atrocities inflected on the workers of the opposition parties by the ruling BJP in the last five years. The former Chief Minister claimed that as many as 25 of his party cadres were killed after the BJP-IPFT coalition came to power.

“As many as 25 CPI-M cadres were killed in violence owing to political vengeance. I have personally visited some of the bereaved families who lost their dear ones in such incidents,” Sarkar said, according to an East Mojo report

Sarkar also took a dig at Chief Minister Manik Saha for claiming peace and fewer crimes in the state. Sarkar said, “The present Chief Minister is relatively educated, I believe. Instead of being aware of everything, he is making statements as if the law and order situation is completely fine. In reality, thousands of Opposition party workers have suffered at the hands of miscreants.”

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