Agartala, June 20 (IANS) Tripura Deputy Chief Minister Jishnu Dev Varma on Wednesday said 2,133 seats in Zilla Parishad, Panchayat Samity and Gram Panchayat were vacant, as the CPI-M blamed the resignations on threats by the BJP and IPFT cadres.
Communists Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) MLA Sudhan Das told the Assembly that after the BJP-IPFT alliance got a majority in the February Assembly polls, thousands of attacks were unleashed on Left leaders and members by the ruling parties, resulting in the resignations.
In reply, Varma said: “Around 2,133 seats of three-tier local bodies – Zilla Parishad, Panchayat Samity and Gram Panchayat – were lying vacant.
“No specific complaint was submitted to me that any elected representative of these three local bodies has resigned following any intimidation,” Varma said in the House, which witnessed noisy scenes and heated arguments on the issue.
Das said: “Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb and other ministers are aware about some of the specific threats and intimidation to the elected representatives.
“Elected Chairman and members of some municipal councils had to resign after the BJP and IPFT cadres threatened them.”
He said that there was no state in India where elected representatives of local bodies were forced to resign after the political change over of governance.
Meanwhile, the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party)-IPFT (Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura) government on Tuesday introduced a bill in the Assembly to provide an alternative mechanism for payments from the Gram Panchayat funds for completed works.
“All orders for payment from the Gram Panchayat Fund shall be signed jointly by the in-charge Panchayat Secretaries and and Block Development Officers concerned, till the time the new Pradhan or Upa-Pradhan are elected through due legal process, so that the development works are not hampered,” said Varma, who is in charge of Rural Development (Panchayat) Department.