Joint rally in Delhi for statehood

A group of the Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) leaders on Monday joined a Maha Rally in New Delhi organised by the National Federation of New States seeking new states.

By Debraj Deb in Agartala
  • Published 20.03.18
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IPFT activists during the Maha Rally in New Delhi on Monday. Picture by UB Photos

Agartala: A group of the Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) leaders on Monday joined a Maha Rally in New Delhi organised by the National Federation of New States seeking new states.

Failing this, the federation has threatened to launch a united political front before the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

Twipraland is a proposed separate state for indigenous communities of Tripura.

The federation organised a collective session on statehood demands at Hansraj College in Delhi on Sunday.

The rally on Mondaystarted from Rajghat and ended at Parliament Street.

Youth IPFT leader Shuklacharan Noatia told reporters that they were protesting to raise statehood demands from across the country at the national level. "Twipraland is a political demand and so are all others. The protest was successful," he said.

No central government representative has met the delegates so far.

NFNS general secretary Pramod Bodo said the protest was the first agitation of its type done jointly by all statehood demand groups in the country.

"After Telangana, Uttarakhand and Jharkhand, no new states were created," NFNS president Srihari Aney said.

The NFNS comprises the leaders of statehood movements of Vidharba, Bodoland, Bundelkhand, Gorkhaland, Twipraland, Kukiland, Karbi State and Poorvanchal.

On why his party leaders joined the rally despite being in alliance with the BJP in Tripura, which summarily rejected demand for a separate state, IPFT chief N.C. Debbarma said, "It was a pre-scheduled movement. A team of our party joined the agitation."

The All Bodo Students' Union, one of the participants in the rally, warned that the new state demand issue would "impact" the BJP in the next year's Lok Sabha polls.

It complained that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and home minister Rajnath Singh did not reply to their letters for an appointment to discuss the issue.

Absu president Promod Boro told The Telegraph on Monday that if the BJP-led government did not fulfil their separate state demands, the NFNS would form a political front before the Lok Sabha elections. "Today we request the government to take a policy decision on the issue soon or the government will face the consequences," he said, adidng that the joint movement would continue.