Tripura polls: CPI(M) declares candidates’ list, includes 12 new faces

The assembly elections in Tripura are scheduled to be held on February 18. CPI(M) has been in power in the state since 1993.

india Updated: Jan 23, 2018 17:40 IST
Priyanka Deb Barman
Priyanka Deb Barman
Hindustan Times, Agartala
Tripura polls,Tripura election,Tripural assembly elections
CPI(M) activists hold flags and huge party symbol in an open rally at Bridge Parade Ground in Kolkata.(PTI File Photo)

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) on Tuesday announced its list of 60 candidates with 12 new faces, including a Rajya Sabha legislator, for the assembly elections next month in Tripura where the Bharatiya Janata Party is aiming to dislodge the Left-led government that is in power since 1993.

The party’s state secretary Bijan Dhar said Jharna Das Baidya would contest the Badharghat assembly constituency, which is reserved for a Scheduled Caste candidate. Former Congress MLA Dilip Sarkar, who first joined Trinamool Congress in 2016 and then the BJP last year, is the sitting legislator.

“Being an SC, she is eligible for the seat. Moreover, she is a senior woman leader. Also, her two-term as a Rajya Sabha MP would be over soon. We hope to bag the seat this time,” Dhar said after the announcement of the candidates’ list at the party headquarters.

Dhar said five sitting MLAs – three from Scheduled Tribe (ST) constituencies – have been dropped from the list.

“All the MLAs, except one, were dropped from the list due to their illness while another decided to dedicate more time to party’s organisational activities,” Dhar said.

Incumbent chief minister Manik Sarkar will contest from his home constituency of Dhanpur in Sepahijala district. Sarkar has been in office since 1998, having led the CPI(M) to power for four terms.

Seven women candidates would contest the polls scheduled to be held on February 18. Five women from the party contested the previous polls.

Referring to sharing seats with Left partners, Dhar said that the CPI(M) would contest in 57 seats while the rest three seats have been divided among the Communist Party of India, Revolutionary Socialist Party and Forward Bloc each.

The party is expected to complete submission of nomination forms by January 29, two days before the stipulated date, the party leader said.

“The Left Front would contest the polls for peace, unity, integrity and development. We are certain to win in all seats,” he said.

The BJP has replaced Congress as the main opposition and is making all-out efforts to capture power in Tripura.

The saffron party and its allies are in power in five of the eight northeastern states. The BJP is already in power in Assam, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh and is aiming to add the poll-bound states of Meghalaya, Mizoram and Nagaland.

Meghalaya and Nagaland will go to polls on February 27. The results will be declared on March 3.

First Published: Jan 23, 2018 17:40 IST