After recently joining the Trinamool Congress, Susmita Dev was to begin her membership drive and ‘padyatra’ in Tripura on Friday, but she alleged that she was unable to do so as she was being “harassed” by the Agartala administration since morning.
The ‘padyatra’ was to start from Kaman Chowmuhani to Orient Chowmuhani in Agartala. The TMC has alleged that in the morning, the hall at Dasarath Bhavan in Supari Bagan area was ready for the programme, but the power was cut off and the event had to take place without electricity supply.
According to a statement released by the party, “The All India Trinamool Congress is pleased to announce that 22 workers from BJP, CPI(M) and Congress from Tripura have joined the party in the presence of Bratya Basu, MIC, Govt of West Bengal, Sushmita Dev, AITC member, Pratima Mondal, Member of Parliament and Jaya Dutta, State Secretary WB-TMC in Tripura today (Friday).”
The programme was to be followed by a rally, which was suddenly cancelled. Speaking to News18, Dev said, “They did not allow a stage for street lecture and did not allow microphone in the auto. They cut off our electricity.” She also posted a video on Twitter, where she is talking to a media channel about the power cut.
— Sushmita Dev সুস্মিতা দেব (@SushmitaDevAITC) September 3, 2021
The Agartala administration has not allowed large gatherings over the past one month citing Covid-19 and, hence, massive rallies are not allowed. Police sources, however, said no rally had been stopped from taking place on Friday.
Last month, TMC workers were also arrested and booked under the Disaster Management Act. The TMC has claimed that rallies by the BJP are allowed by administration.
Nabendu Bhattacharjya, BJP spokesperson, “Their complaints are baseless; we don’t know what happened today (Friday), but they are trying to create drama everywhere.”