Agartala, April 30: Law and order and corruption would be the two major poll planks of the Congress during assembly elections next year in the three northeastern states of Tripura, Meghalaya and Nagaland, a party leader said here Monday, expressing confidence in the party’s victory.
“Law and order machinery have totally collapsed in Nagaland and Tripura. Corruption and misuse of central funds have crossed all limits in these two states,” party general secretary and in-charge of northeastern states Luizinho Faleiro told reporters here.
“The Congress will wrest power in non-Congress-ruled states Tripura and Nagaland and retain power in Meghalaya with thumping majority in next year’s assembly polls,” claimed Faleiro, a former chief minister of Goa.
The Communist Party of India-Marxist-led Left Front and Naga Peoples Front (NPF)-led ruling Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN) are ruling Tripura and Nagaland, respectively, while Congress-led Meghalaya United Alliance is in power in Meghalaya.
Except Tripura, Nagaland and Sikkim, the Congress is ruling in the other northeastern states — Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh.
The assembly elections are likely to be held in February next year.
On Tripura, Faleiro said: “A silent revolution is going on in Tripura. People are asking for a change and transformation will come as the citizens have become fed up with the Left Front government. Congress will bring the change through the coming assembly polls in 2013.”
Coming down heavily on the Left Front government, he said: “The Congress-led UPA (United Progressive Alliance) government at the centre has been providing huge funds under the flagship programme for the development of the people, particularly the poor and backward classes. But the Left government has been misusing these funds.”
“The Left parties have destroyed democracy during their rule since 1978. Crime, corruption and poverty have increased to an alarming extent,” he alleged.
“The CPI-M-led Left parties do not want the people to develop because they fear that if people develop, they may go against them.”
“In most of the 8,122 paras (habitations) of Tripura, most of the population is poor and deprived. According to the statistics provided by the state government, around 67 percent of the population lives below poverty line which is much higher than the national average of 27 percent,” said Faleiro.
Accompanied by Leader of Opposition Ratan Lal Nath, new state party chief Sudip Roy Barman and former chief minister Samir Ranjan Barman, Faleiro alleged that the crime and atrocities against women are increasing in Tripura while the conviction rate is India’s lowest in the state.
The Congress organised a mammoth rally here Monday kicking off the Tripura assembly election campaign. Besides Faleiro, West Bengal Congress leader and Irrigation Minister Manas Bhunia and state Congress leaders spoke at the gathering.