One month strike in Darjeeling begins: Government offices to remain open
Darjeeling/West Bengal, June 12: The Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) will go on an indefinite strike from today demanding a separate state of ‘Gorkhaland’.
“We will go on strike on Monday. Bengal government takes so much revenue from us but it only encroaches our territory. We want our Gorkhaland and will not negotiate on this matter. We will not do any violence,” Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) president Bimal Gurung told ANI.
The movement in the Darjeeling area is against the government’s decision to force the use of Bengali language in the state. Though West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had said that she would not make the language compulsory, the protesters were not ready to accept it.
Meanwhile, GJM general secretary Roshan Giri said that an all-party meeting has been called on June 13 to discuss the matter.
“Offices of Gorkhaland Territorial Administration, Bengal government and Central Government will be closed on Monday. The court will be open. Banks will be open on Monday and Thursday. School and colleges have been exempted from bands. We appealed to put all sign boards in Darjeeling, Kerseong, Kalimpong, Mirik and other places in Nepali and English,” Giri told ANI.
“We have also written to Home Minister Rajnath Singh apprising him as to how West Bengal suppresses us,” he added.
On Saturday, Gurung asked West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee not to do or promote ‘divisive’ politics in the state.
“I request Mamata Banerjee that she is a chief minister and she must not do divisive politics. Her dictatorial politics will find a place in the Guinness book soon,” Gurung told ANI.
He assured that the GJM will talk to the Centre as the state government is trying to suppress Gorkhaland for her own political interest.
“We will talk to the Centre and will send a letter to Prime Minister and Home Minister as well regarding all the atrocities. The state government is doing to suppress Gorkhaland for her own political interest,” he said.
On Friday, a PIL was filed in the Calcutta High Court against the bandh called by GJM in Darjeeling, declaring it to be ‘unconstitutional and illegal’.
The matter will be brought up for hearing this week.
Chief Minister Banerjee has branded the GJM protest as ‘abhorrent’ and appealed to the people of the region to maintain peace.
The GJM supporters are also protesting against the alleged imposition of Bengali in the schools of the hills.
The agitation arose from an announcement made by Mamata Banerjee earlier that Bengali would be taught compulsorily up to Class 10 in the state schools.
After the GJM cadres clashed with the police following their protests against Mamata’s visit to Darjeeling and her decision to make Bengali compulsory in the syllabus of schools across the state, the Army was called in to control the situation.
According to reports, the protest led by the GJM turned violent after protesters resorted to vandalism as they torched police vehicles and attacked policemen.
West Bengal Government orders state government offices to remain open
The West Bengal Government on Sunday requested all the state government workplaces in Darjeeling and Kalimpong to stay open and requested that the representatives write about obligation every day till strike is not pulled back.
The state government additionally requested that no leave will be conceded to any worker on any of the bandh days.
The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) supporters are challenging the claimed inconvenience of Bengali in the schools of the slopes.
The tumult emerged from a declaration made by West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee a week ago that Bengali would be instructed obligatorily up to Class 10 in the state schools.
After the GJM frameworks conflicted with the police taking after their dissents against Mamata’s visit to Darjeeling and her choice to make Bengali necessary in the syllabus of schools over the express, the Army was brought into control the circumstance.