Tripura election: 'Something like a tsunami...' - CM Manik Saha's prediction
Tripura 2023 election: In 2018 the BJP contested 51 seats and its ally, the Indigenous People's Front of Tripura (IPFT), nine; this time the BJP has taken 55 and given the IPFT five.
Tripura chief minister Manik Saha has predicted 'something like a tsunami' ahead of an Thursday's assembly election and claimed the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party will retain power in the north-eastern state. "You've heard of a tsunami... something like that will happen. Anything can happen... but it will not be less than 2018. In 2018 we got 36 seats and our alliance partner got eight seats. So, this time we will get more..." he told news agency ANI.
Tripura votes for a new government this week; polling for all 60 seats will be held in a single phase and votes will be counted on March 2, as will those from Meghalaya and Nagaland, which vote on February 27.
The BJP faces a combined challenge from the Congress and the state's Left parties, both of whom say they formed a partnership to 'save Tripura'.
READ | For Tripura polls, prime minister Modi makes a 'double engine' pitch
Asked about that challenge, the chief minister said: "They (the opposition) are doing traditional politics. PM Modi changed definition of politics…"
"(Opposition) are doing arithmetic as to how many (votes) they can get but we work for public. No arithmetic works in front of public's trust," he said.
The chief minister also spoke about the possibility of a post-poll alliance with the Tipra Motha, calling it 'remote'. "The kind of figures we have, on the basis of that figures we can say that there are remote chances."
Tipra Motha, chaired by royal family member Bikram Manikya Debbarma, is demanding a ‘Greater Tipraland’.
In 2018 the BJP contested 51 seats and its ally, the Indigenous People's Front of Tripura (IPFT), nine. This time the BJP has taken 55 and given the IPFT five.
The BJP has fielded almost all of its big guns to ensure victory in Tripura, where Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress is also in play.
Amit Shah, the union home minister, was in the state on Sunday and BJP chief JP Nadda was in capital Agartala last week to release the party's manifesto; "When BJP brings out a 'sankalp patr', or a 'vision document', it is not only a piece of paper... it is BJP's commitment towards the people," he declared.
READ | Left-Congress combine appeals to dethrone BJP in Tripura
Prime minister Narendra Modi also campaigned last week. He held a roadshow in Gomati district and addressed crowds in Radhakishorepur and Ambassa.
In Ambassa, Modi highlighted the BJP government's development of Tripura, including laying of optical fiber in villages, construction of around 5,000 km of new roads and the building of a new airport in Agartala, and said the state is poised to become a 'gateway' to South Asia.
READ | Tripura 2023: Only double-engine govt can protect state - Shah
On Sunday Shah said the jodi of Modi and Saha would make Tripura a prosperous state. "People of Tripura have seen the bad governance of Communists, witnessed corrupted governance during Congress time..." he said.
With input from agencies