Agartala, Sep 30, 2023, ENEWSTIME Desk
The Opposition Party, TIPRA Motha Party (TMP) sponsored 12-hour strike in the areas under the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) passed off almost peacefully, except a couple of minor incidents on Saturday.
Since the early hours of the morning, TMP supporters gathered at various locations within the TTAADC, commencing picketing activities in support of the strike.
In a bid to enforce the strike, TMP supporters blocked the Assam-Agartala National Highway and roads in the sub-divisions, effectively hindering vehicular traffic. While the strike was observed comprehensively in remote and hilly regions, in the plains, many shops, schools, and government offices remained open.
TMP supporters obstructed the National Highway at Chandra Sadhu Para in Barmura and Mungiyakami areas, causing significant disruptions to vehicular movement. Additionally, they initiated picketing activities at the Mungiyakami Rail Station, leading to the suspension of train services.
Amid the presence of party MLAs, TTAADC Chairman Jagadish Debbarma, representatives of Ems, and TMP leaders, supporters set ablaze tires and chanted slogans in favor of 'Greater Tipraland.' Although TMP's ex-Chairman, Pradyot Kishore Debbarma, had excluded ambulances and essential services from the strike, agitated TMP activists in Barmura vandalized several vehicles, including an ambulance.
During the strike in Baramura, a crude bomb exploded near the TMP gathering site, creating panic and a tense atmosphere. A substantial police force, led by Jirania Sub-Divisional Police Officer Himadri Prasad Das, swiftly arrived at the scene and recovered another crude bomb. The situation quickly escalated as TMP supporters became agitated and vandalized several cars, prompting the deployment of additional security forces.
The BJP-led government issued a circular instructing all offices in the TTAADC areas to operate as usual, directing officers and staff to be present at their workplaces. In response, opposition TMP leaders reaffirmed their commitment to fighting for the establishment of 'Greater Tipraland' for tribal communities, who, they claim, lack essential facilities in education, healthcare, and other areas.
TMP leader Pradyot Bikram Manikya Deb Barman, currently residing outside the state, emphasized that the strike conveyed a clear message to the Central government. He asserted that the patience of indigenous people is running thin, and urgent action is required to address their constitutional demands and concerns.
"We seek justice for the survival and existence of our indigenous community, and it is not directed against any particular community," he asserted.