AGARTALA: Amid allegations of pre-poll violence and intimidations by all the opposition political parties in Tripura, the ruling BJP won 112 of the 334 seats uncontested in the Agartala Municipal Corporation (AMC) and 19 other urban local bodies ahead of the November 25 elections.
Officials of the State Election Commission (SEC), which is conducting the politically important civic polls, on Tuesday said that the Bharatiya Janata Party has already secured the majority in the seven civic bodies in Jirania, Ranir Bazar, Mohanpur, Bishalgarh in Western Tripura, Santir Bazar and Udaipur in southern Tripura and Kamalpur in northern Tripura. The officials said that now 785 candidates of various political parties, including BJP, CPI-M led Left parties, Trinamool Congress and Congress, are vying for the 222 seats. The crucial elections to the 20 urban local bodies in Tripura, including the AMC, are scheduled to be held on November 25. The counting of votes will be held on November 28.
State Election Commissioner Manik Lal Dey said that the elections would be held through the Electronic Voting Machines in adherence to the Covid protocols. The five-year terms of the AMC and other civic bodies expired on December 20 last year but the BJP-led Tripura government did not conduct the elections due to Covid-19 pandemic, triggering controversy.
The Opposition parties – CPI-M led Left parties, Trinamool Congress and Congress – separately alleged that due to the violence, threats and pressure by the ruling BJP leaders and their goons, many of their candidates could not file the nomination papers or were forced to withdraw the candidatures after submissions. CPI-M state Secretary Jitendra Chaudhury and Trinamool Congress leader Subal Bhowmik separately complained that homes of many of their candidates were attacked by the BJP workers and their goons and many of them physically assaulted.
The Opposition parties also urged the SEC to take appropriate measures to hold the civic polls smoothly and peacefully. The BJP, however, has rubbished the accusations. Tripura state BJP vice-president Rajib Bhattacharjee said that the Trinamool Congress (TMC) has unleashed a reign of terror in West Bengal against the BJP and brought the culture of violence in Tripura.
“The TMC leaders are frequently coming to Tripura spending lakhs of rupees they earned from various chit funds and instigating violence in the state (Tripura),” Bhattacharjee told the media. (IANS)