Manik Saha, the Chief Minister of Tripura, stated that he has not been appointed by the central leaders in three or seven months, and that he will be in the lead in the Assembly elections early next year. The declaration of Saha, who took office on May 15, a day after Biplab Kumar Deb resigned as chief minister, is crucial since the Tripura Assembly elections are slated to take place in around eight months (February 2023).
IANS cited Saha as saying in a party meeting during campaigning for the June 23 bypolls to four Assembly seats, "J.P. Nadda, the BJP President, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have both expressed their confidence in me. This isn't the ideal place to air all of your grievances." Saha is running for the first time in six months in order to become a member of the Assembly.
The 69-year-old Congress-turned-BJP leader, who is running against five other candidates in the Town Bordowali Assembly constituency, is also the state party's president and a Rajya Sabha member.
After the resignations of three BJP MLAs and the death of CPI-M lawmaker Ramendra Chandra Debnath, bypolls were called. Three MLAs — Sudip Roy Barman, Ashis Kumar Saha, and Ashis Das — had resigned the BJP and the Assembly amid hostility from a segment of BJP members toward then-CM Deb.
In February, Roy Barman, a former BJP minister, and Saha joined the Congress, while Das joined the Trinamool last year. Last month, Das resigned from the Trinamool Congress. This time, Roy Barman and Saha are running for the Congress in the Agartala and Town Bordowali Assembly constituencies, respectively.
Meanwhile, former Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb met with BJP President JP Nadda on Saturday in New Delhi and also met with Kailash Vijayvargiya, the party's national general secretary, and the party's Tripura in-charge Vinod Sonkar on Monday in Agartala. "We have addressed the tactics for the byelections in all of these sessions," Deb tweeted.
In all four assembly seats — Town Bordowali, Agartala, Jubarajnagar, and Surma — the Left parties, the Congress, and the Trinamool Congress ran campaigns (SC). Abhishek Banerjee, the national general secretary of the Trinamool Congress, will be in Tripura to spearhead the campaign, as his party has put up candidates in all four seats through a roadshow and will also address an election meeting.