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Trinamool Congress releases manifesto for Agartala before civic polls

 
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Ashok Chatterjee

Kolkata (The Hawk): The Trinamool Congress (TMC) launched its manifesto on Tuesday for the upcoming Agartala Municipal Corporation (AMC) election. In the manifesto, the party has made nine sectoral promises for the residents of Agartala -- civic infrastructure, public safety, waste management, governance reforms, accessible healthcare, reduction in local taxes, water supply, social welfare and social security. The party has called them the ‘navratnas’ for Agartala.

It promises pothole free Agartala with regular upgrade and maintenance of the existing roads, dividers, and footpaths in a concerted effort to beautify the city; free public Wi-Fi which will facilitate high-internet connectivity at four major hotspots across the city; clean and accessible bio-toilets at every ward along with prioritizing hygiene, cleanliness and safety for women in existing public toilets. The toilets will help especially the women, who are out on the streets for work. The party also promises upkeep of nine municipal markets and seven parks; upgrading of the Battala burning ghat with four electric furnaces and an AC waiting room with an investment of Rs 10 crore; installation of street-lights in every 300 meters and high-mast lights in 30 major chowmuhanis across the city to dispel all darkness; 100% CCTV camera coverage with installation of 700 additional CCTV cameras; 24x7 mobile vans for civic patrolling and launch of 250 ‘pink autos/taxis’ operated and availed by women exclusively with 50% of the cost be covered by the AMC.

The previous tweets by the TMC criticizing the state government on the worsening civic amenities was an indication that the Kolkata-headquartered party wants to take on the local government in Tripura before the municipal polls in Agartala.

TMC Rajya Sabha MP Sukhendu Sekhar Ray, who was in Agartala for the manifesto launch said the party wants to follow its leader Mamata Banerjee’s principles in Tripura. The MP, along with Bengal minister Indranil Sen highlighted the repeated attacks on party workers by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) goons even after the Supreme Court order.

“The Tripura CM Biplab Deb has openly said that the police force is under his control. Many BJP MLAs have threatened TMC candidates and the candidates for the AMC. Of the 28 women candidates of the TMC, 18 of them have been targeted by the goons and threatened. They are trying to threaten us but Mamata Banerjee has overcome all fears and will also make her way in Tripura. The government here has not restored the heritage and culture of the state and we will do so,” said the RS MP, adding that Rabindranath Tagore and RD and SD Burman have taken so much inspiration from the state.

Rajya Sabha MP and Tripura steering committee member Sushmita Dev said that the present government has done very little for the people. “People tell me that they are tired of promises. They want actual development instead of promises. Unlike other parties, TMC AITC will fulfil its promises. We will follow a bottom-up approach to bring development in Tripura. Although Agartala is a ‘smart city’, CCTV cameras can hardly be found. People of Agartala want similar development like West Bengal. This manifesto is based on public survey and opinion.”

Tripura state convenor Subal Bhowmik, yesterday said that the party has formed an election management committee in those localities where local body elections will be held. Respective committees have been formed for Agartala Municipal Corporation, Ambasa Municipal Council, Teliamura Municipal Council, Sonamura Municipal Council, Bilonium Municipal Council; Dharmanagr, Kailashahar, Kumarghat and Amarpur Municipal Corporation.