Though the regional party sought to contest 22 of 28 seats in council, it says negotiations will continue
The Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) has opened negotiations with its coalition partner BJP over seat-sharing for elections to the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC). Though the regional party has sought to contest 22 of the 28 seats in the council, the party top brass said negotiations with the saffron party were not yet over.
In a major political development, IPFT president and Minister Narendra Chandra Debbarma, his Cabinet colleague Mevar Kumar Jamatia and all party MLAs met Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb. This is the first top-level meeting between the Chief Minister and IPFT leaders after Mr. Jamatia led a party delegation to Delhi last month to meet BJP President J. P. Nadda.
The IPFT had submitted a written memorandum to the BJP chief to press demand for 22 seats in election to the TTAADC which was constituted under the sixth schedule of the Constitution with limited authority over the State’s three fourth lands.
Due in May
Election to the TTAADC was due in May following expiry of the tenure of the erstwhile elected executive committee, but had to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Governor’s Rule was imposed in the council as a temporary measure before announcement of fresh election schedule.
Both the IPFT and the BJP have not disclosed anything about the meeting between top IPFT leaders and the Chief Minister. However, sources on Friday said the TTAADC election and seat sharing were the main talking points.
Mr. Debbarma confirmed that they were discussing alliance issues with the BJP at different level, but said nothing concrete achieved. He said his party would fight the TTAADC elections on its own strength if discussions fail.
Meanwhile, the government is likely to issue a fresh notification to extend the period of Governor’s Rule in the TTAADC. The current phase would end on November 16 and the State government has not yet decided over declaring schedule for election to the council.