In a tragic incident, a TV journalist was killed on Wednesday while covering a clash between IPFT and ruling CPI(M)’s tribal wing, Tripura Rajaer Upajati Ganamukti Parishad (TRUGP). The deceased journalist, identified as Santanu Bhowmick was abuducted and stabbed brutally. He was working for Dinrat News in Mandai.
The Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT) started operations as a tribal-based party in Tripura apart from being a member of the North-East Regional Front.
The party existed from the years 1997 to 2001 until it was merged into the Indigenous Nationalist Party of Tripura (INPT) and reformed in 2009. Further, it made a foray in politics during the 2000 Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) elections. It won 17 out of 28 seats while earning a majority in TTAADC.
In the 2000 elections, the Tripura National Volunteers (TNV) supported the IPFT. The IPFT contested both the Loksabha seats of Tripura in 2009, but received very few votes.
Moreover, the party also failed to gain a majority in the 2013 Tripura assembly elections. Some prominent IPFT youth leaders, including David Murasing and Pabitra Jamatia, left the party to join BJP on 11 December 2016.
However, David Murasing ultimately left BJP in 2017 to join Tipraland State Party (TSP).
IPFT is demanding the tribal state of Twipraland from the existing Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council and has been resorting to a series of violent protests in the poll-bound state of late.
IPFT has been a long-term supporter of the NDA government. Further, under the presidentship of NC Debbarma, it had also held a meeting with PM Modi in May 2017 regarding their demand of Twipraland.