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BJP takes Gorkhaland to ‘centre stage’ Morcha says strike to continue

Posted by Ramesh Khati on July 17, 2009

Darjeeling MP Jaswant Singh (left) and Gorkha Janmukti Morcha general secretary Roshan Giri release a booklet “Why Gorkhaland” in New Delhi on Thursday.

Darjeeling MP Jaswant Singh (left) and Gorkha Janmukti Morcha general secretary Roshan Giri release a booklet “Why Gorkhaland” in New Delhi on Thursday.

New Delhi, July 16: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha today refused to call off the strike in Darjeeling hills and continued the tirade against the “imperialist” Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee government

“August 24 is a long date. The strike is continuing against police atrocities,” said Roshan Giri, the general secretary of the Morcha. The outfit wants the tripartite talks at the political level and before the end of the budget session of Parliament — a demand that could be fulfilled only through political pressure.

The Morcha leadership was even more upbeat today as Darjeeling MP Jaswant Singh “nationalised” the issue by releasing a booklet Why Gorkhaland? to spread awareness about the cause. The book release was held at the Constitution Club here in the morning.

Therefore, Gorkha leaders found support and encouragement from the presence of several BJP MPs like Rajiv Pratap Rudy, B.S. Koshiyari, Arjun Meghwal, Banka MP Digvijay Singh and others, as they came down on the Left front government.

Terming the Communist government “imperialist and colonialists”, senior Morcha leader Tankha Bahadur Chhetri complimented Sushma Swaraj for stalling the “imperial design” of the Left by preventing the passage of the Sixth Schedule Bill in Parliament.

The Morcha leaders also made some serious allegations, accusing the Marxists of “conspiring to dilute Gorkha population by settling illegal immigrants from Bangladesh in Siliguri and north Bengal”.

The Bengal government, the Gorkha leaders said, were the exploiters and oppressors.

They thanked the parliamentary standing committee on home affairs led by Swaraj, whose report prevented the passage of the bill that would have included the hills in the Sixth Schedule. Singh said the people had a long-standing demand and Gorkhaland was very much a part of India.

Singh said he had met Union home minister P. Chidambaram on several occasions regarding the Gorkhaland issue.

The booklet attempts to prove that Darjeeling district was never a part of Bengal. It cites the Government of India Act, 1935 which made the area partially excluded. The booklet has a map of Gorkhaland.

source: The Telegraph


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