By Tapas Dey
June 17, 2017: A crucial occasion in state politics seems to have slipped into posterity without much ado-the completion of fifty years of existence of Tripura’s first tribal based regional party, the Tripura Upajati Juba Samity (TUJS) which was reincarnated as Indigenous Nationalist Party of Twipra (INPT) in 2002.
It was the three eventful days of June 10-12 ,1967 that a major milestone in state politics was set up with the launching of the TUJS in a convention at Kaintya Kobra under Mandai block in then Sadar subdivision.The launching of the new party was attended by none other than legendary Dasharath Deb who attempted to influence the course of the new party and its policies and programmes under his own party, the CPI (M). But the young leaders of TUJS , Shyamacharan Tripura, Drau Kumar Reang, Harinath Debbarma and Bijay Kumar Hrangkhawal proved much cleverer as they kept the party closed to non-tirbals and chalked out a four-point programme for the new party. These included an autonomous district council for tribals, introduction of ‘Kokborok’ as medium of instruction for tribal students, innerline for ADC and alienation of tribal land .