Tripura: CPI(M), Cong told to vacate over 100 party offices built on govt land
The CPM and Congress have opposed the government’s decision to demolish the party offices if they are not removed.Updated: May 07, 2018 18:26 IST
The BJP administration in Tripura has asked the CPI(M) and Congress to vacate over 100 party offices built on government land, or face eviction.
Police said a few party offices were bulldozed at Old Motor Stand in Agartala on Monday, soon after a notice was issued in this regard. While the two opposition parties did not deny the government’s claim, they objected to the manner in which the operation was being carried out.
“It’s true that these structures were built on government land many years ago, but the decision to demolish them is with the intention of suppressing opposition activities in the state. We want the government to withdraw its decision,” said CPI(M) state secretary Bijan Dhar, adding that deadlines for vacating party offices vary from place to place.
The party claimed that 99 of its offices in various parts of the state were served notices. They were given a week’s time to move out.
The Congress, for its part, plans to protest against the government’s decision at Agartala on May 17. “As many as 35 of our offices received notices from the government. While it is true that many of them were built on government land, the administration has served the notices without calling an all-party meeting,” said party president Birajit Sinha.
West district magistrate Dr Ramteke has directed that party offices in his jurisdiction be vacated by May 6. “If it is not done by that time, the administration will take the help of the police and – if required – paramilitary forces to demolish the offices from May 7. We will not be responsible for the destruction of any property kept in those structures once the deadline has lapsed,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Congress launched an agitation in front of the west district magistrate’s office to protest against the move on Monday. They were arrested, and later released.
Over 200 offices belonging to the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) — a workers’ organisation affiliated to the CPI(M) — have already been destroyed until now, said CITU president Manik Dey. “We are ready to cooperate if those places are required for developmental purposes. But the government should have made alternative arrangements before bulldozing the structures,” he added.