Tripura: “IPFT’s silence shocking, BJP-IPFT govt discriminatory towards indigenous people”, says JACCS convenor

Tripura: “IPFT’s silence shocking, BJP-IPFT govt discriminatory towards indigenous people”, says JACCS convenor

TNT News | Agartala | January 16, 2019

"Silence is not always golden" and this is exactly what the BJP's ally IPFT in Tripura is being made to realise at a time when the whole of Northeast India continues to put up a stiff opposition towards the passage of the Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016 that was passed in the Lok Sabha on January 8 this year.

"We were happy for once that an indigenous party IPFT had formed an ally with the BJP in 2018 to rule over the people of Tripura but IPFT's silence on the entire Citizenship Bill imbroglio is more than just disappointing. The lives of our people is at stake but the IPFT seems more concerned about the chair rather than its people. Not even a word of condemnation by the IPFT after the unprovoked firing incident on January 8 at our indigenous brothers who protested unarmed against the passage of the Citizenship Bill! This is discrimination towards the indigenous people by the government", rued Anthony Debbarma, convenor of Joint Action Committee of Civil Society (JACCS) while speaking to TNT- The Northeast Today.

His reaction comes after a series of unrest in Tripura ranging from unprovoked firing by security personnel leading to 6 people being critically injured, an attack on an ambulance and now the denial by the police to hold a peaceful protest against the Citizenship Bill by JACCS.

It may be mentioned that the Joint Action Committee of Civil Society (JACCS) has been denied permission to hold a protest rally on January 20 by the police. The same was intimated to them via letter signed by the Sub Divisional Police Officer of West Tripura.

The reason cited for denying permission was due to 'other engagements'.

The letter also mentioned that violation of the order would invite prosecution under Section 82 of the Tripura Police Act 2007 as well as 188 IPC.

JACCS convenor Anthony Debbarma also added, "Attempts are being made to undermine and curtail the movement of the indigenous people who are fighting to safeguard their rights. This is not only human rights violation but also an attempt at genocide by the police and executive forces".

Condemning the unprovoked firing at the civilians on January 8 as well as attack on the ambulance carrying the injured protestors, he said, "Booking the student leaders and protestors under various sections shows that the forces can do anything to our people and hence our fight should become even more intense", while also condemning the FIR filed against Twipra Students' Federation (TSF) members.

Debbarma also termed IPFT's silence on the entire turn of events as 'Shocking'.

"IPFT is part of the government and as part of the alliance the indigeneous people expect the IPFT to take a stand for its people. I see them as not committed to the people but only committed to the chair. They as part of the government are equally responsible for what happened to our people", he said while adding, " We will continue to fight for justice and the perpetrators must be punished whoever they may be".

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