After talks with the alliance partner BJP failed, the ruling Indigenous People's Front of Tripura (IPFT) Saturday announced that it would contest both the Lok Sabha seats of the state alone. IPFT general secretary Mevar Kumar Jamatiya said the party wanted field its candidate from East Tripura seat, reserved for ST contestants, but the BJP did not agree to it.
"So we have resolved to fight both the seats of the state. We have made the decision in our two-day central committee meeting that concluded today," Jamatiya, also state forest and tribal welfare minister, told reporters here. The IPFT would soon declare its candidate, party sources said.
The BJP decided to contest both the seats and it was conveyed to the IPFT earlier, party spokesperson Nabendu Bhattacharya said. BJP general secretary Ram Madhav, the party's pointsman for the north-east, had held a meeting with IPFT supremo NC Debbarma and Jamatiya Wednesday, and sought the tribal party's support for the two seats of the state, a senior saffron party leader said here.
Both the Lok Sabha seats in Tripura are held by the CPI(M). The BJP-IPFT coalition ousted the CPI(M)-led Left Front government early last year. In the 60-member Assembly, the two parties have 38 and eight MLAs respectively. The rest of the seats are with the left party..