“Don’t interlink Tipraland with CAB”, says Tripura royal scion

“Don’t interlink Tipraland with CAB”, says Tripura royal scion
Tripura Royal Scion, Pradyot Manikya Debbarma

AGARTALA | Dec 5, 2019:

Tripura royal scion, Pradyot Manikya Deb Barman has asserted that Tipraland is not a solution to rid the tribals from the vexed Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) while urging the indigenous people of Tripura to refrain from interlinking demand for separate statehood with CAB.

Deb Barman was clarifying on the concerns raised by a section of the society on his silence on the Tipraland demand vis-a-vis citizenship amendment bill wherein they had observed that having a separate state will protect the indigenous people of Tripura from the bill.

"If you're saying that having a separate Tipraland, the pressure on CAB will fade, then this is wrong. Because if that was the case, then states like Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Manipur, Meghalaya and Nagaland, where majority of the population are the tribals, would have remained silent on the issue," Deb Barman said adding that these tribal-dominated states understood that if a bill like CAB is passed, then their population is in danger.

He pointed out that in Mizoram, majority of the population are Mizos, in Nagaland, the Nagas, in Meghalaya there are the Khasis, Jaintias and Garos, Arunachalees are a majority in Arunachal Pradesh, in Manipur, there are the Kukis, Meiteis and Nagas but they are all up in arms against the Centre over this bill.

"Don't interlink the demand for separate statehood with CAB; If you want to demand for Tipraland, do it; this is your constitutional right but at this point and time, we must concentrate only on CAB and I repeat, we oppose the CAB in its present form," said the royal scion.

He informed that during their meeting with union home minister, Amit Shah in New Delhi recently, the indigenous and political leaders from Tripura raised excellent points but none of them spoke about the Tipraland demand because it was not in the agenda. "We spoke only about CAB because at this moment, the entire Northeast is worried about this bill," he said.

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During the meeting, the leaders of Tripura raised a few points with the home minister which included — keeping ADCs out of the purview of this bill, to raise the number of tribal seats in the Assembly, to give ADCs the power to formulate land laws, to provide permanent settlement to the Reangs in Tripura and to seal the Indo-Bangladesh porous border along Tripura.

"Tripura has reached a saturation point, we cannot accept anymore migrants from other countries. Tripura should no longer bear the burden of migrants as has become the case. We welcome Hindus and will also offer funds for education, health care on condition that GOI settle them outside our state as we are saturated," he said.

Meanwhile, on the demand made by Rajya Sabha MP from Assam, Biswajit Daimary to carve a Union Territory for the indigenous tribals of Tripura, Deb Barman asked "Those who want TTADC to become UT, are you prepared to loose your job/educational reservation from 31% to 7.5% ?"

He further explained that if TTADC becomes a UT, there will be no home department, which means no control over the police and second, the reservation policy will go for a toss. "Please note, that the 7.5 percent will not be exclusively for Tiprasa's but it will be shared with other STs across the Northeast and India. So Think Twice before you know what you demand," he added.

The royal scion reiterated the need for peaceful protests and asked citizens to hold democratic protests and not to indulge in violence.

It may be mentioned that the CAB, which was cleared by the union cabinet on Wednesday will be placed in Parliament next Tuesday.

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