Tribal bodies reject demand for a separate state

Tribal bodies reject separate states
Agartala, Sep 8: Major tribal bodies in Tripura today rejected the demands for a separate state in the name of 'Twipraland' by carving out the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council.

The Tribal Student Union (TSU) and the Tribal Youth Federation (TYF), the tribal student wing and tribal youth wing of ruling CPI-M, in a joint press conference here rejected the demand for a separate state in Tripura saying it is divisive and communal.

"We want peace and communal harmony and not division of the state. We want more development for the tribal community and we oppose any kind of demand in ethnic line which would divide the state," President of TYF and CPI-M MLA Pranab Debbarma said.

Recently, the Indigenous People's Front of Tripura (IPFT), a breakaway faction of Indigenous Nationalist Party of Tripura (INPT), has demanded for a separate state carving out the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC).

The tribal council constitutes two third of the state territory and is the home to tribals forming one third of the state population. When contacted, Assistant General Secretary of INPT and President of Indigenous Youth Federation of Tripura (IYFT), Rajeswar Debbarma said, "We oppose the demand for Twipraland, because it is not the right demand in right time for development and empowerment of the tribals in the state."

"We want conducive atmosphere for empowerment of the tribal council. The central government had in the last year gave some proposals for empowerment of the tribal council to the state government and other tribal bodies. We would like to see that these proposals are implemented," he said.

He expressed his concern over slow implementation of Forest Dwellers Act in the state for rehabilitation of the tribals in forest areas. "Its implementation is slow and the tribals are suffering from want of land," he said.

However, Tribal Welfare Minister Aghor Debbarma recently informed the state assembly that more than 1,20,000 tribal families had been given land patta in forest areas and they were being rehabilitated in rubber cultivation and other schemes of the state government.


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