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Monday, March 15, 2010

Public wait for Secret to end...GNLF leader house ransacked, car damaged

TT, Darjeeling, March 14: The ides of March is set to reveal one of the most talked about “secrets” in the hills.
Kalimpong is likely to be swamped by hundreds of people from across the Darjeeling hills, the Terai and the Dooars tomorrow when the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha will reveal its “secret proposal” to the Union government.
Although the document is set to be unveiled at a media conference at Deolo Tourist Lodge, 4km from Kalimpong, Morcha leaders admitted that it would be difficult to prevent supporters from attending the show. “Officially, we are organising a media conference, but representatives of the frontal organisations, subdivisional and the zonal committees will be present. Since people are very inquisitive, we think even a large number of supporters without any portfolio will also attend the conference,” said Binay Tamang, the assistant secretary of the Morcha.
The party has decided to construct a podium for the event. “Our party president will disclose the document after which it will be read out and distributed,” said Tamang.
The document, which contains merely a proposal from the Morcha to the Union government on an interim set-up, will be scrutinised in detail by the party supporters from the Terai and the Dooars.
This is largely because the Morcha president, Bimal Gurung, had earlier told The Telegraph that even though they would not be “leaving the Dooars and the Terai in the set-up, there will be a slight change in the name and territory”.
Many believe that unlike the present map of the area the party wants as Gorkhaland, in which areas right up to the Sankosh river along the Bhutan border have been included, the proposal leaves out places in the Dooars and the Terai, where there is no presence of Nepali people.
However, there have been indications from the Morcha that even the areas in the Dooars and the Terai it wants to include in the new set-up have not yet been agreed upon by the Centre. Tomorrow, the Morcha will also disclose the names of the delegates of the party at the first tripartite meeting at the political level in New Delhi on March 18.
Mukhia says attack an attempt on his life
TT, Siliguri, March 14: 
The house of the GNLF’s Terai branch convener was ransacked and his vehicle damaged allegedly by Gorkha Janmukti Morcha supporters today. Rajen Mukhia, however, has termed the attack as an “attempt on my life”.

The attack took place three days after Mukhia had held a media conference here on Wednesday with a rope with noose iterating his promise that he would hang himself if the Morcha could keep its pledge of achieving the separate state. Morcha chief Bimal Gurung had set March 10, 2010 as the deadline to achieve Gorkhaland.
On September 7, 2008, Mukhia’s Maruti car was also set on fire allegedly by Morcha supporters in front of his home. His house at Panighata in Kurseong subdivision, 40km from here, was also attacked about seven months ago.
Mukhia was at his two-storied concrete house with some local party leaders and family members, when a group of 40 to 50 people organised the attack around 11.30 this morning. “Some minor repair was going on in my house and I was paying the labourers when the group attacked,” Mukhia said. “They started throwing stones at the house and tried to get hold of me. Somehow, I managed to escape but the glass windowpanes of my house were shattered and furniture damaged in the raid. The attackers also damaged my Maruti Gypsy. It was an attempt on my life.”
The GNLF leader alleged that the attackers, brandishing rods and sticks, had abused him. “They were repeatedly saying Bimal Gurung (the Morcha chief) had instructed them to finish me and I should be killed to completely wipe off the GNLF from the hills,” Mukhia said.
He said he was ready to die if the the Morcha could achieve Gorkhaland for the hill people after his death. “But otherwise, I am not among those who will retreat in fear.”
“The feeling of insecurity and the erosion of support base are prompting the Morcha to organise attacks on the GNLF leaders as people have been listening to us and have well understood that the so-called leaders (of the Morcha) are more interested in filling their coffers than striving for Gorkhaland,” the GNLF leader said. “Finding no other option now, they (Morcha supporters) have resorted to violence to intimidate people.”
As the attackers swarmed in Mukhia’s house, officers from Panighata police outpost arrived at the spot, half-a-kilometre away, and brought the situation under control. Seeing the police, the mob fled.
“We have filed a complaint with the police and want them to catch the culprits or else we will launch a movement against them (the law enforcers). The attackers came from Panighata and Chenga,” Mukhia said.
Tikaram Pradhan, a Morcha leader in Panighata, has denied the involvement of his party supporters in the attack. “The people in general are frustrated to see the highhandedness of Mukhia and his cohorts; so, they protested today,” he said. “The GNLF is trying to implicate us.”
The police said patrolling at Panighata had been intensified to maintain law and order. “We have started raids to arrest the accused,” an officer said.
On February 18, a primary English medium school at Ging in Darjeeling set up by a GNLF leader was torched. Kurseong MLA Shanta Chhetri’s house was also set on fire the same day. On January 24, the houses of two former GNLF leaders were vandalised at Haridashatta by unidentified people, a day after three leaders of the party, including Mukhia, were attacked in Mirik.
Morcha & tribal outfits tie up in campus poll
Alipurduar, March 14: The student wings of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and the Akhil Bharatiya Adivasi Vikas Parishad, though opposed to each other on the separate statehood demand, have decided to strike an electoral alliance for the coming Jaigaon College election.
Both the Gorkha Janmukti Vidyarthi Morcha and the Adivasi Chhatra Sangha alleged that nothing had been done for the students or the development of the institution when the college union had been under the control of the RSP’s Progressive Students’ Union (PSU) for the past nine years.
“We might be against the demand for the inclusion of the Dooars and the Terai in the Morcha’s proposed map of Gorkhaland and several other issues, but for the interests of the students and the college, we have decided to go in for the alliance,” said Noushan Beg, the vice-president of the Chhatra Sangha’s state committee.
Kiran Sewa, the secretary of the Jaigaon unit of the Vidyarthi Morcha, said an understanding had already been reached with the Chhatra Sangha on fielding nine candidates each in the 18 seats of the college union. “Our stands on the Gorkhaland might not be in agreement. But we are one with the Adivasis that the students in the region have been getting a raw deal and we have decided to improve the situation,” Sewa said.
The election to the college union that was slated for March 16 was postponed by the subdivisional officer of Alipurduar after the college authorities had approached the administration for police arrangement.
Hyder Ansari, a PSU leader, has refuted the charges. “The alliance will have no effects on our prospects. We will bag all the seats,” he said.
KalimNews:1. GNLF organised first meeting in Chilaney Dhura of Longview TE in the Terai belt near Pankhabari of Kurseong. Tshering Dahal GNWO leader addressed.
2. Congrees keen on granting autonomy to hills with revision in Sixth schedule- Deepa Dasmunshi.
3. CPRM blamed GNLF for mis-administration and GJMM for chaos in the hills.
6. Sixth Sauti (limericks) organised in the 87th episode of Basibiyalo in Kalimpong
7. GJMM supporters of Hills and Dooars left for Delhi to participate in demonstration of GJMM to be held on 18th March 2010 the day of tripartite talks.

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