Rebellion from tribal allies blows over

The opposition Congress in Tripura has agreed to give one seat to the National Conference of Tripura (NCT) and leave 10 to the Indigenous Nationalist Party of Tripura (INPT).

"Congress is a big family so there may be resentment among a few members but we have managed to solve our family problems through discussions," Tripura Pradesh Congress Committee President Sudip Roy Burman said.

Promising good governance if the party was voted to power, Burman said "People in the state are aware that we are united and able to fight the twenty¿year misrule of the CPI-M."

"The Congress leadership has discussed the problems and I have decided to accept their proposal of contesting in one seat and withdrawing all our candidates from the fray. I am sure if we can fight unitedly and will be able to win many seats in tribal areas," NCT President, Animesh Debbarma told reporters.

AICC member Debabrata Koloi said that the TPCC President and senior leaders held a discussion to put up a united fight and decided not to put up any candidate against official ones.

"We are not a divided house now," he said.

The earlier decision to give 11 seats to INPT led 32 members of the Schedule Tribe cell of the Congress, including AICC member Nirupama Chakma, resign from the party and fax their resignation letters to Congress President Sonia Gandhi on January 15.

Koloi, the leader of the Congress ST cell, had also threatened to field 20 candidates -- 17 in ST reserve and three in general category.

The NCT, a breakaway faction of INPT, had also threatened to put up 20 candidates against those of the alliance.

Tribals constitute one third of Tripura¿s roughly four million population and 20 out of the 60 Assembly seats are reserved for them.

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