ALSO READTripura poll result will impact natl politics, CPI (M): Party leader Left Front would win 2018 Tripura Assembly elections: Yechury CPI-M will retain power in Tripura, get more seats, asserts party Tripura defeat major setback for Left: CPI-M Both CPI-M, BJP confident of Tripura election victory
"Wholesale defection" of Congress leaders and cadres to the BJP in Tripura was one of the factors behind the saffron outfit's emphatic win in the recent assembly polls, the CPI(M) has said. The BJP-IPFT alliance handed out a crushing defeat to the CPI(M)-led Left Front after its 25-year uninterrupted rule, winning 43 seats in the 60-member assembly. In the latest edition of the CPI(M) organ 'People's Democracy', former general secretary Prakash Karat argued that the BJP and its alliance partner Indigenous People Front of Tripura (IPFT) took over the Congress base. "The major political feature has been the shift in the alignments in the state... The Congress, the main opposition, saw a wholesale defection to the BJP. In the past two years from top to bottom, its leadership and cadres were appropriated by the BJP.
This resulted in the Congress vote share of 36.54 per cent in 2013 assembly election plunging to 1.8 per cent in the current election. "The INPT, which was allied to the Congress in the last election, saw its vote dropping from 8.1 per cent to 0.7 per cent. The BJP was able to consolidate the anti-Left vote behind it. Similarly, its ally the IPFT was able to neutralise the other tribal party the INPT, the former ally of the Congress, and take over its base," Karat said. Terming the election results as an "unexpected verdict", Karat also accused the BJP of pumping in "unprecedented" amount of money before the election to win over the candidates of other "bourgeois" parties. The entire media in the state was "suborned" to project the BJP and mounted a negative campaign against the Left Front government, he said. The Left leader has admitted that the BJP's campaign slogan of change did strike a chord with the young generation of voters particularly the urban and tribal youths. "Despite the all-round positive performance of the Left Front government, the fact remains that generating jobs for the educated youth posed a big challenge," he wrote. He added that the party would take stock of this serious setback and take appropriate political and organisational measures to remove any negative trends and weaknesses.
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