|Sedition charges against tribal leaders|
AGARTALA, Feb 6 - In a new twist to the politics over the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, amid the raging protest against it across the North East, the Tripura Police have registered sedition charges against three tribal leaders – Jagadish Debbarma of the INPT, Aghore Debbarma of the IPFT’s ‘Tipraha’ group and Anthony Debbarma of the Borok Human Rights Group – and several others.
At a huge tribal gathering at Khwamlung, headquarters of the TTAADC, 15 km from the capital town, addressed by royal scion Pradyot Kishore, these leaders had allegedly raised anti-Indian slogans like ‘Good bye India, welcome China’, etc.
Acting on the information, West Tripura district’s Radhapur police station officers registered complaints under sedition charges against these leaders on Monday, though no notice has been served yet. Reports have circulated that a case of sedition has been initiated against Pradyot Kishore also, but this has been denied by the police as he had not made such utterances. Meanwhile, the INPT described the sedition charges brought by the police against tribal leaders as “politically motivated” and designed to stop their organisational activities.
Reacting to reports of sedition charges having been slapped against the tribal leaders, Pradyot Kishore said that he was not with those who raised such slogans. “They do not know what kind of a country China is; people who protest there are killed,” he added. He endorsed the police cases against the leaders who raised such slogans.
Strongly reacting to the sedition charges against the INPT leaders and the State’s royal scion Pradyot Kishore Debbarman, INPT general secretary Jagadish Debbarma said it was a political conspiracy against the party to prevent it from spearheading the anti-government movement.
“It happens when the Government feels insecure in the wake of the anti-government stirs on rightful and legitimate issues. The FIR against three senior tribal leaders on sedition charges is aimed at putting pressure on the Opposition parties,” he said over telephone from Delhi today.
“I am not aware if anybody raised anti-Indian slogan. Could anybody prove it? It is all about putting pressure on the INPT and other like-minded parties, which are up in arms against the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, NRC and the ADC empowerment move,” he said.
Debbarma alleged “if anti-Indian slogan was raised in the January 30 rally, they must be VHP or RSS followers who are persistently trying to foil our movement.”