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Tripura: Amid Kokborok paper row, BJP, IPFT urge student body to call off protest; hold talks with govt

11 Feb 2024

Agartala (Tripura) [India], February 12 (ANI): After the Tipra Indigenous Students Federation (TISF) declared an indefinite protest over its demand for allowing board examinees to write their native Kokborok paper in Roman script, BJP Janajati Morcha state president and ex-MLA, Parimal Debbarma, on Sunday urged the students' body to sit for talks with the government.

Speaking to media persons on Sunday, Debbarma said the strike should be the last resort in any movement as he urged the TISF to call off its scheduled protest on Monday.

"The organisations should place their demands before the government through proper channels. All problems could be solved through a dialogue. We urge members of the protesting students' body to call off the strike and come to the talks table," Debbarma told reporters on Sunday.

The leaders of the BJP's Janajati Morcha and the Indigenous People's Front of Tripura (IPFT) held a series of marathon meetings on the issue with Chief Minister Dr. Manik Saha for the last couple of days.

"We met the chief minister yesterday, as well as today, to apprise him of the developments with regard to the protest. Dr. Saha informed us that he has written to the CBSE to intervene and resolve this dispute over scripts and a response is forthcoming. We are hopeful of a solution soon," the BJP leader said.

Notably, the Tipra Indigenous Students Federation (TISF), the students' wing of Tripura's main Opposition bloc, TIPRA Motha, said on Friday they would hold an indefinite protest, put road blocks and disrupt railway services across the state from February 12 to step up pressure on the state government to meet its demand for allowing students to write their Kokborok paper in the Roman script.

"The TBSE president initially said that both scripts would be allowed but later went back on his word, saying that only Bengali script would be allowed. For several years, students have been writing their Kokborok paper in both (Roman and Bengali) scripts. So, we have come out in opposition to his statement and will hold indefinite road and railway blockades throughout the state starting February 12," TISF central president Sajra Debbarma said earlier.

The strike will continue till they were assured of a solution, Debbarma said, adding that an assurance on allowing board examinees to write their Kokborok paper in Roman script has been sought in writing.

"They have formed a committee to decide the places where they would hold an indefinite (road and rail) blockade," he added. (ANI)

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