The BJP government was re-elected to a second consecutive term in Tripura’s assembly elections. Dr. Manik Saha, Chief Minister of Tripura, spoke with Kamal Sandesh Associate Editor Vikash Anand about the election results. In the discussion he stated how the double-engine government led to the victory in the State: We are publishing excerpts of the discussion for our esteemed readers :
First of all, heartiest congratulations to you for BJP’s huge victory in the Tripura assembly elections.
Thank you so much.
The BJP in the State got blessing of the people for the second time. How did pro-incumbency instead of anti-incumbency play a role in the elections?
The double engine government in the central and the state believe in ‘Good Governance’. Revenge politics has always been there in Tripura; we are working to change that atmosphere, which stems from the communist culture. You can see that culture in West Bengal and Kerala. We told our party’s Karyakartas to stop it.
We would not say that political violence has stopped, but it has certainly decreased in the last ten months. It will take time to put an end to the violence that the opposition continues to incite.
Good governance and development are the two most important issues of pro-incumbency. Our government addressed this issue for the first time in Tripura, resulting in a pro-incumbency victory.
Since, this election was held in the State under your chief ministership, obviously, your governance as Chief Minister also played an important role in the victory. Apart from this, to whom do you give credit for this wonderful victory?
We, the Karyakartas of the Bharatiya Janata Party, go to the people in the elections only in the name of Hon’ble PM Shri Narendra Modi Ji and the agenda of Development, Good Governance with sustainability. From the grass roots level to ‘Panna Pramukh’ all the Karyakartas work with enthusiasm to fight the election. Under the leadership of Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji and the guidance of Shri Amit Shah Ji, Shri J P Nadda Ji, and other senior leaders, we contested this election. For this victory, I would like to express my heartfelt congratulations to all the members of the Bharatiya Janata Party, both from central & state who made themselves victorious in this prestigious ideological election.
The election saw a huge turnout of voters. It was seen that women’s turnout was higher than men’s. What was the reason for increased female voter turnout?
Tripura is a politically charged state. People actively involved in politics can be found in every nukkad. One of the major reasons for such a large turnout is the people’s love, respect, and affection for our Hon’ble Prime Minister. People in the state do not want the unholy alliance of the left party to return. Our sole mantra has been development, and this massive turnout was in support of that goal. We delivered numerous schemes for the socioeconomic development of women from the ‘Double Engine’ Government, which earned their trust.
How far has the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his special attention to North-eastern states impacted this assembly election?
Since 2014, the Hon’ble Prime Minister’s policy shift from Look East to Act East has undoubtedly brought the North East region to the forefront. Earlier, we rarely saw any Union Ministers visit here, but since 2014, nearly every week, one or more Union Ministers have visited the North Eastern Region.
The only agenda of Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji is to deliver development with good governance. And this agenda had a significant impact on the assembly election. All people on the ground recognise Modi Ji’s special focus. I invite you to visit this North Eastern Region, you would know how Prime Minister is acknowledged here.
Now Tripura is doing well on social indicators, reducing political violence. How is your government bringing about this change?
We are focusing on good governance with people, the platforms like ‘Amar Sarkar’ has given power to the people. We are first state to give social pension of Rs. 2000/month to about 3.8 Lakhs beneficiary. Through HIRA Model of development the Highways, Internet, Railways and Airways have been strengthened. We have been able to curb the drugs supply in the state. A smooth relation with the administration have also been made in order to make the people most beneficial. These all factors have somewhere helped us to improve the social indicators in the state.
As stated in the NCRB, all types of criminal activity have been reduced. We also have a “Zero Tolerance” policy for any form of violence. All of this increased public trust in the state. And we are referred to as a government of change.