With the by-election coming close, the Senior TMC leader Abhishek Banerjee on Monday urged electors to prevent a split in anti-BJP votes in the upcoming Tripura assembly by-election by favoring their votes to TMC led by the Mamata Banerjee instead of “wasting their votes” on Congress and CPI(M).
The TMC general secretary Abhishek Banerjee, who was in Agartala to campaign for party candidates alleged that Tripura has one of the highest unemployed rates at 18 percent as per CMIE data, and reports the highest number of incidents of political violence in the Northeast region.
“If this situation continues, the unemployment problem will never be addressed and there will be no investment in Tripura,” Banerjee told reporters.
“If you want to bring a change, you will have to vote for TMC in the upcoming by-elections. You must avoid voting for CPI(M) and Congress, as exercising your franchise in their favor would mean wasting your democratic right,” he said.
The Lok Sabha MP said that even if BJP secures 40 percent of the votes, the remaining 60 percent will go to the opposition’s kitty.
“This 60 percent anti-BJP vote will mean nothing if it gets divided among the opposition. Hence, I appeal to everyone to vote for TMC,” he said.
Banerjee alleged that the ruling BJP has unleashed “terror tactics” to scare voters ahead of the by-polls.
“Two of our candidates — Panna Deb (Agartala) and Sanhita Bhattacharya (Town Bardowali) — were attacked by BJP goons. Democracy has been throttled in Tripura,” he said.
“I urge voters to exercise their democratic right fearlessly. The by-elections are not a battle between BJP and TMC or other parties. It is a fight between the ruling dispensation and the masses,” he added.
At least 22 candidates, including Chief Minister Manik Saha, are in the fray for the upcoming by-elections to four assembly constituencies.
The by-election to the four assembly segments – Agartala, Town Bardowali, Surma, and Jubarajnagar – will be held on June 23.
Trinamool Congress, which aims at spreading its footprint in the northeastern state, has fielded its candidates in all four constituencies.
Altogether 1,88,854 electors are eligible to exercise their franchise in the by-elections to the four seats.
The by-election was necessitated by the death of CPI(M) MLA Ramendra Chandra Debnath (Jubarajnagar) and the resignations of Roy Barman (Agartala) and Asish Saha (Town Bardowali). Besides, the Surma seat became vacant after BJP legislator Asish Das was declared disqualified by the assembly speaker.
The counting of the by-election votes will be on June 26.