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Big difference between Greater Nagalim & Greater Tipraland demands, says Pradyot Manikya

AGARTALA: TIPRA Motha chief and royal scion Pradyot Manikya Deb barma today clarified that there is a big difference between the demand for a Greater Nagalim and his party’s demand for a Greater Tipraland that shall encompass

“The Greater Nagalim concept is not clear, no? My concept is very clear — it is within the Constitution of India,” he told InsideNE.

Manikya has been seeking to dispel confusion over the demand for a Greater Tipraland — the recently-formed TIPRA’ primary demand.

“If there is any confusion, people need to listen to what I have said they will understand. I have said that the Tripuris who are living outside the ADC have to be incorporated or something has to be set up by the government of India to protect their culture and socio-economic interests. The Sámi people are an indigenous Finno-Ugric people inhabiting Sápmi, which today encompasses large northern parts of Norway — we want something like that. We are saying our interests, our culture, our language, our identity have to be protected as they are under threat. In Assam also, there is a separate Council for Bodos outside the Bodoland Territorial Council.”

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The movement for a Greater Tipraland has gained steam after regional party Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura’s demand for a separate state Tipraland seems to have fizzled out.

That the movement indeed has great support among the tribals of the state was cemented after Pradyot’s TIPRA trounced the BJP and its ally IPFT in the recently-held polls.

Asked if TIPRA has its eyes set on the Assembly elections after its emphatic victory in the Council election, Pradyot said, ” Our eye is only on the demand for a Greater Tipraland and we have already made the push for it. I am expecting that after the election result, the government of India will invite us to have a word.”

Pradyot recently sprung a surprise after he chose not to become the Chief Executive Member (CEM) of the Tripura Tribal Council and was Purna Jamatia was sworn in instead. Pradyot says that he will instead play a role of an ‘adviser’

“I realized that my agenda was never to be the CEM but to keep the party intact and strong as the people have voted for us for Greater Tipraland. I have noticed that once we become we have to take the official line. But if I head the party at least the control and the reason why we got elected will be at the core of our demand and we also have a policy decision — one man one post,” Manikya said, rationalizing his decision.

The newly-formed TIPRA, led by royal scion Pradyot Kishore Deb Barman, swept the TTAADC elections, winning 18 of the 28 seats that went to the polls on April 6.

The BJP won nine seats and one seat was bagged by the Independent candidate. Notably, the BJP’s ally and regional powerhouse Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura (IPFT) drew a blank, as did the Congress.

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