AGARTALA, Aug 9 (PTI): Over 5,000 opposition Left supporters on Thursday courted arrest from various parts of Tripura in a civil disobedience agitation against the alleged anti-farmer policy of the central government, police said. Police said there was no report of violence during the agitation, though Left leaders alleged that they were attacked by ruling BJP supporters at different places.
In the first major political protest since the poll debacle of the Left Front in Tripura in February, seven Left trade unions organised the stir as part of a nationwide protest by different peasant bodies.
Assistant Inspector General (Law and order) Smriti Ranjan Das said 5,222 supports were arrested from across the state and no violence was reported. However, All India Krishak Sabha state secretary and Narayan Kar alleged large-scale violence by ruling “BJP supported goons” on the agitators. “BJP-supported goons attacked farmers at Gandacherra in Dhalai district, Panisagar in North Tripura and Amarpur in Gomati district on their way to protest rallies,” he said.
Police used tear gas shells and water canon to disperse the agitators at Paradise Chowmuhani here where former chief minister Manik Sarkar joined the protest, the AIKS leader alleged. Former state assembly deputy speaker Pabitra Kar said Agartala city was barricaded in a war-like situation to prevent the rally. He also alleged that BJP workers tried to prevent left supporters from joining the movement. BJP spokesperson Mrinal Kanti Deb, however, denied the charges and said left parties were trying to sensationalize the situation. “Democratic atmosphere prevails in the state.
The opposition party was able to organise the civil disobedience after new government’s formation is proof enough that there is no political victimization.” Kishan Mazdoor Joint Forum organized the movement in 450 districts of the country on Thursday. The agitators submitted deputations to District Magistrates in all eight districts of the state.