Agartala: After a gap of more than a month owing to his illness, TIPRA Motha chairman and royal scion Pradyot Kishore Debbarman on Monday landed at poll-bound Tripura.
Debbarman received a rousing reception as thousands of Youth TIPRA Federation activists organised a motorcycle rally to welcome him.
Addressing a gathering at Khumulwng, the headquarters of Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council, Debbarman said, “My political rivals may feel I am ill, weak, and they will be able to break my party’s unity. They think the Tiprasa people will lose. I want to tell them, what acts as medicine for me is the people’s unity.”
Stating that he had been offered even the post of Chief Minister to compromise with his core demand of Greater Tipraland, Debbarman said, “They have money power. They want to buy us. Sometimes they offer me the post of Chief Minister or an MP, just to get my support. My strength comes from the unity of my society, and I am again clarifying that other political parties are fighting for power, and my fight is for the next generation.”
Debbarman also explained how he was subjected to enormous political pressure and received poaching threats. “I was threatened several times. They want to break my party. When they realised I am not purchasable, the people in my party started receiving offers. They want to buy my MDCs. If any chose to compromise, he must not be considered a leader in the first place. But, I will stay here and continue to fight till my last breath,” an emotional Debbarman told the gathering.
Reiterating his stand on Greater Tipraland, Debbarman said, “My fight is for the 13 lakh Tiprasas of the state. If you want our support, come and give us in writing what you can do for us. Verbal assurances are mostly not kept. I want to see the rights of our people protected by constitutional shields”.
Conveying a significant political message, Debbarman also sought to reach out to the workers and leaders of Congress and CPIM. “For the last two years, the Congress and CPIM workers had been suffering in the hands of ‘Bike Bahini’ (An infamous motorcycle-borne terror squad allegedly owing allegiance to BJP). I want to tell you, have you ever heard the BJP attacking the warriors of TIPRA? The reason is we know how to protect our workers. Come and join us. TIPRA will stand solid beside its workers all across the state,” he asserted.
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The TIPRA supremo also castigated the ruling party for its policies against Muslims, Manipuris, Christians and other marginalised groups. “What did the Muslims get? The SCs, OBCs, Manupuris all these sections of the societies have been suffering. The Bike Bahini is perpetrating atrocities on all. Crime against women increased dramatically, but the police did not bother to catch the culprits. The police will never stay with them all their lives. Once they lose power, the police will be against them within sometime,” he threatened.
On the land rights of the indigenous people, he said, “Land rights is a must. People ask me what is necessary to give land rights to the tribals. I want to say, if our land is not ours, how do we claim authority? Today, ONGC drills out gas from TTAADC areas but never spends a penny on the poor Tiprasa. They sponsor Sonu Nigam’s concerts and NGOs working in other areas. That needs to be stopped.”
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