Gorkhatimes

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Relief for Sikkim extended – Morcha exempts educational institutions, tea gardens and cinchona plantations from strike

Posted by Ramesh Khati on July 18, 2009

Bimal Gurung (centre) releases the booklet, Why Gorkhaland, in Darjeeling on Friday.

Bimal Gurung (centre) releases the booklet, Why Gorkhaland, in Darjeeling on Friday.

Darjeeling, July 17: From Monday, all educational institutions, tea gardens and cinchona plantations will be exempt from the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha’s indefinite strike, the party announced today.

The Morcha has also decided to extend the relaxation to the vehicles bearing Sikkim numberplates from 6am tomorrow to 6am on July 23. “Sikkim vehicles can ply along NH31A from tomorrow to 6am on July 23. Other vehicles bearing Bengal registration numberplates will not be allowed to ply. Shops and other establishments along the highway will, however, remain closed during the relaxation period,” said Binay Tamang, the party’s assistant secretary.

Yesterday, the Morcha had said the relaxation to Sikkim vehicles would be given only between 6am and 6pm tomorrow.

“Sikkim has been supporting our cause and as we also want to strengthen the bond between the two areas, we have decided to provide a longer relaxation,” said Tamang.

The party has not, however, decided to provide any relief to people of the urban areas. “Today, we wrote to the Union home ministry saying that the tripartite talks on Gorkhaland must be held at a political level in July itself. If we do not receive any communication from the Centre before July 23 morning, we will close down NH31A and also review the relaxation we announced today,” said Tamang.

The Morcha leader made the announcement following an emergency meeting of the party’s central committee at Darjeeling Gymkhana Club soon after the release of a booklet, Why Gorkhaland.

Earlier, during the day, while addressing a gathering, Morcha chief Bimal Gurung had said he was aware that people were facing inconvenience because of the strike.

Source: The Telegraph

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