Tripura Assembly polls: BJP, Congress release first list of candidates
Tripura's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday released its first list of 48 candidates for the upcoming Assembly elections. Chief Minister Manik Saha will be contesting from the Town Bordowali, while Union Minister Pratima Bhoumik has been fielded from Dhanpur. Meanwhile, Congress has also named 17 candidates in its first list and fielded Tripura Pradesh Congress Committee Chairperson Sudip Roy Barman from Agartala.
Why does this story matter?
- The 60-member Tripura Assembly will go to polls on February 16.
- The BJP is set to contest the elections without a regional partner after its talks with the Tipraha Indigenous Progressive Regional Alliance (TIPRA) Motha failed.
- Meanwhile, political observers believe the Congress-Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPIM) coalition can put up a strong battle against the BJP and keep it below the majority level.
Tripura BJP chief says party will contest alone
Tripura BJP President Rajib Bhattacharya has said the party would field its candidates in all 60 Assembly constituencies and fight the elections alone. The BJP released a list of 48 candidates on Saturday; the names of the remaining candidates will be released soon. Its candidates include those belonging to Scheduled Castes (SC), Scheduled Tribes (ST), Other Backward Classes (OBC), minorities, and women, Bhattacharya said.
List of 48 BJP candidates shared on Twitter
The first list of 48 BJP candidates for the General election to the legislative assembly of Tripura finalised by the BJP Central Election Committee. pic.twitter.com/XmZ7g5y1pp— BJP (@BJP4India) January 28, 2023
Here's the list of Congress candidates
Besides Barman, Congress has fielded Prasanta Sen Choudhury from Mohanpur, Sista Mohan Das (Barjala), Ashish Kumar Saha (Town Bordowali), Gopal Roy (Banamalipur), Keshav Sarkar (Majlishpur), Raj Kumar Sarkar (Badharghat), Susanta Chakraborty (Suryamaninagar), Ashok Debbarma (Charilam) and Ashok Baidya (Teliamura). Others include Titan Pal (Radhakishorepur), Pranajit Roy (Matarbari), Rubi Gope (Kamalpur), Diba Chandra Hrangkhawl (Karmachara), Satyaban Das (Pabiachhara), Birajit Sinha (Kailashahar), and Chayan Bhattacharjee (Dharmanagar).
Congress-Left alliance against BJP
Interestingly, Congress has formed an alliance with the Left Front for the upcoming polls. The CPI(M)-led Left Front earlier announced 47 candidates, leaving only 13 seats for Congress. Of these, the CPI(M) is contesting 43 seats, while the four constituents are contesting one seat each. Now, Congress announcing 17 names is a significant development, hinting all may not be well between the alliance partners.
BJP's post-poll alliance option open for TIPRA Motha
TIPRA Motha chief Pradyot Kishore Deb Barma has discussed a merger with IPFT, a component of Tripura's BJP-led coalition government, but the talks were inconclusive, according to The Telegraph. The BJP has now opted to run alone in the elections but has reportedly left the door open for a post-election alliance with TIPRA Motha if it fails to secure a majority on its own.
Results of the 2018 Assembly polls
In 2018, the BJP won 36 seats with 43.59% of the votes, and Biplab Kumar Deb was made the CM. The Left Front alliance was able to get only 16 seats while bagging 44.35% of the votes. Last year, however, the BJP made Manik Saha the CM of Tripura and nominated Deb as a Rajya Sabha MP.