Tripura: Return of the Red Star
What was foreseen as a close contest turned into a one-sided show. When the first couple of seats in Tripura Assembly polls went in the CPI (M)’s favour, even the most optimistic of Marxists could not anticipate the shape of things to come.
Veteran tribal leader Dasarath Deb opened the account for the Marxists with a resounding 12,000 vote-margin victory at Ramchandraghat in the heart of Tripura’s ‘red fort’, where hillmen have called him “Mukuthin Raja” (uncrowned king) since the days of the shortlived communist uprising (1948-51) in the state’s eastern mountains.
But the first strike was the beginning of a clean sweep, as the CPI (M) led Left and Democratic Front went on to bag 49 of the 60 seats, leaving the ruling Congress (I) with ten and its ally TUJS with just one.