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Monday, August 30, 2010

GJMM withdraws strike.. team to find Nicole.. CID submitted chargesheet against 30 GJMM

KalimNews: In view of the forthcoming tripartite talks to be held on 7th September the strike to be resumed is withdrawn. GJMM is in favour of an amicable resolution for the demand of Gorkhaland as such it wants to create a favourable and harmonious environment before the talks.  GJMM leadership during a press release of the party declared that the indefinite strike is henceforth withdrawn
Meanwhile ABGL team met Rahul Gandhi at Delhi on Monday who assured them of necessary assistance.
CID Named 30

Darjeeling Times, Darjeeling, August 30: GJMM has announced the withdrawal of its indefinite Bandh, which was suspended till today, taking into consideration of the forth coming Tripartite Talks scheduled to be held on September 7 in New Delhi. GJMM had called the indefinite Bandh in the hills against the suspicious escape of Nicolel Tamang, who was under the remand of CID for investigation.
Dilemma of indefinite Bandh had been lynching over the suspended political atmosphere of Darjeeling hills after the Nicole Tamang suspiciously vanished from the custody of CID. As the much awaited moment exceeded, ‘Hearing’ of Nicole Tamang to be produced at the Darjeeling Judicial Court, Police officials along with CID arrived at the premises of the Darjeeling Judicial Court but without Tamang.  However, CID has filed a ‘Charge-Sheet’ against 30 GJMM supporters against the murder of Madan Tamang on May 21. There were intense activities witnessed in Darjeeling District Court today between GJMM leaders and Darjeeling District Magistrate Surendra Gupta. Session bench of Judicial Magistrate also discussed the matter of Nicole Tamang with CID officials in Darjeeling today. Later GJMM leaders called the Press conference at 2 O’clock and revealed their programs as follows: Withdrawal of Indefinite Bandh in the hills, considering the importance of Tripartite Talks, which is scheduled to be held on September 7 in New Delhi. An investigating Team will be formed by GJMM in search of Nicole Tamang, which is liable to go beyond International boundaries. The issue has been discussed with the Darjeeling District Magistrate, Surendra Gupta for necessary requisites.
Relay Hunger strike will be observed by GJMM from September 1 to September 17 in Darjeeling, demanding Nicole Tamang Should be produced at the Court of Law without any harm.
30 GJMM supporters named in the CID’s ‘Charge-Sheet’ against murder of Madan Tamang on May 21 are Basant Yogen Rai, Sudesh Raimaji, Ashish Tamang, Sunil Rai, Tilak Rai (Sotang), Puran Rai, Kismat Chettri, Alok Thulung, Tenzing Khambachey, K R Pokhrel, Dinesh Gurung (Kaila), Puran Thami, Dinesh Subba (Kaila), Nicole Tamang, Sanjay Tamang, Suraj Singh, Prabin Subba, Arun Moktan, Dawa Sangay Sherpa, Bhanu Rai, Kamal Sinha of M P Rd, Naresh Rai, Nagendra Pradhan, Babita Ganguli, Sona Sherpa, Keshar Rai, Amol Lama, Dil Kumar Rai of Singla , Subash Tamang and Sangay Yolmo of Harsingh.
Kalimpong News adds: CID submitted a 519 paged Charge sheet signed by Ardhendu Pahari the chief Investigating Officer of CID. The name list contains 2 women leaders but excludes Roshan Giri whose name was included in the Telephonic intercept published by Indian Express. Further it has stated that it may submit supplementary list if any. 
Vivek Chhetri, TT, Darjeeling, Aug. 30: The CID today submitted a chargesheet before a Darjeeling court alleging that 30 Gorkha Janmukti Morcha activists were involved in the murder of Madan Tamang.
Senior Morcha leaders, who had earlier been named in an FIR after the murder of the ABGL chief, do not figure in the chargesheet.
Assistant public prosecutor Govind Chhetri said: “The CID has filed a 519-page chargesheet and has further maintained that they can file a supplementary chargesheet if other names figure in their investigations.”
This technically means that the senior Morcha leaders could figure in the supplementary chargesheet if further investigations point to their involvement.
The FIR filed by ABGL general secretary Laxman Pradhan soon after the May 21 murder had named Morcha chief Bimal Gurung, his wife Asha Gurung and central committee members of the party Roshan Giri, Harka Bahadur Chhetri, Pradip Pradhan, Col(retd) Ramesh Allay and Binay Tamang as conspirators. None of the names figure in the CID chargesheet.
But seven other persons named by Pradhan figure in the chargesheet.
All the 30 persons have been booked under Section 147/148 (rioting/rioting with deadly weapons), 149 (unlawful assembly), 427 (mischief causing damage), 506 (criminal intimidation), 302 (murder) and 120 (conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code.
Of the 30, nine people had already been arrested. One of the prime accused, Nickole Tamang, fled from CID custody on August 22. Another accused is nursing bullet wounds in hospital.
While submitting the chargesheet the CID had pleaded before the chief judicial magistrate to issue arrest warrants against those who have not yet been picked up. Court warrants make it easier to arrest the accused if they have fled to other states. Shyam Prakash Rajak, chief judicial magistrate, has granted the petition.
With the filing of the chargesheet, the first step towards the trial of the murder case has started. Had the CID failed to submit a chargesheet within 90 days of the arrest of the accused, even those picked up for non-bailable offence would have been entitled to bail.
The chargesheet is primarily the findings of the investigation team. However, whether those named are actually guilty of committing the crime will be evident at the end of the trial.
“The trial will take place at the session’s court. If those named in the chargesheet are not arrested, there are provisions in the CrPc to even attach their properties. A few other procedures like transferring the case to the session court (from the chief judicial magistrate’s court) and separating the cases for those who have been arrested and those who are yet to be arrested will take place before trial starts,” said a lawyer.
In fact, the court had earlier imposed a freeze on the bank accounts of 10 of the accused including Nickole.
According to Chhetri, 61 witnesses have been named in the investigations. Sources said Bharati Tamang, the wife of slain leader Madan Tamang, and his son Sanjog Tamang are among the witnesses.
The Morcha refused comment on the chargesheet. Party assistant secretary Binay Tamang said: “Let the law take its own course.”
The CID has filed a fresh FIR after Nickole’s disappearance. The accused’s police remand ended today. Defence lawyer Seshmani Gurung said: “The CID team maintained that Nickole has fled from their custody and have filed an FIR at the Pradhan Nagar police station in Siliguri. The bail application of the other seven accused were rejected and they will be produced in court on September 13,” said Gurung. 
Talks on mind, strike pushed back once again
TT, Darjeeling, Aug. 30: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha has decided to postpone its indefinite strike once again, keeping in mind the official-level tripartite meeting scheduled for September 7.
However, the party has decided to organise relay hunger strike from September 1 to demand that their party leader Nickole Tamang be produced in court alive.
The Morcha had earlier threatened to start an indefinite general strike across the hills if Nickole was not produced alive in court today. Nickole’s 14-day police remand ended today.
In fact, soon after Nickole escaped from the CID custody, the Morcha had called a strike from August 22 to 24. The party had given a two-day breather to the indefinite strike before postponing it on Friday till August 30.
Roshan Giri, general secretary of the Morcha, today said: “We have decided to postpone the general strike keeping in mind the scheduled tripartite talks. We will however start a 24-hour relay hunger strike from September 1 which we will carry on unless Nickole is produced alive in court. Seven Morcha supporters will sit for the hunger strike in shifts.”
The relay hunger strike will take place in Darjeeling, Kurseong and Kalimpong. Giri said preparations were on to stretch the fast till September 17. “We are ready till September 17 and if Nickole is not produced alive even by then we will stretch the hunger strike.”
The fast will be held in front of the district magistrate’s office in Darjeeling and on the subdivisional office premises in Kurseong and Kalimpong.
Binay Tamang, assistant secretary of the Morcha, said the party would form its own “investigating team” to find out the whereabouts of Nickole. The Morcha has not yet ruled out “foul play” by the CID.
The party had earlier alleged that the CID was staging the escape drama to cover up Nickole’s death in custody.
“We will not disclose the name of our investigating team and we are ready to go anywhere including Bhutan and Nepal to trace Nickole. We will inform the police about our movement but if we find that Nickole has been killed by the CID, the state government and the police must be held responsible,” said Binay Tamang.
The Morcha said it would not close down the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council offices this time.
“We will keep them open but the DGHC authorities must start the regularisation process against the 3,472 sanctioned posts in the council,” said Binay Tamang. 
CPM job demand
TT, Kalimpong, Aug. 30: Senior CPM leader from the hills Tara Sundas has demanded that the appointments of para-teachers and midwives in the hills should not be stalled, but completed at the earliest in a fair and transparent manner.
Taking on the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha, Sundas, a member of the CPM’s Darjeeling district secretariat, said the appointments should not be kept on hold till an interim administrative arrangement was put in place in the hills, as demanded by the hill party. The Morcha has called for a freeze on appointments, alleging malpractice in the recruitment process.
Green & grey for equality- Premier college goes for uniform
TT, Gangtok, Aug. 30: First semester student Sunil Chettri was a bit apprehensive as he walked into Tadong Government College dressed smartly in a deep green blazer, green striped tie and grey trousers. But soon Chettri’s awkwardness dissipated.
His friends also turned up similarly dressed, and soon the premier college in the hill state was crowded with students in green and grey uniform. The dress code had been enforced by the authorities from today to maintain uniformity among students hailing from different economic backgrounds.
For the girls, grey skirts with black stockings have replaced the trousers. “We are very happy about the uniform. It has brought unity and uniformity on the campus,” said Chettri.
Tadong Government College comes under Sikkim University. The monsoon semesters had started from June and the college authorities said the decision to introduce uniforms was taken at that time. “But we could not implement it then, as we had to give students time to get them stitched,” a member of the college authority said.
College principal M.P. Kharel said the institution had a dress code earlier from 1985 to 1987, but for some reason it was withdrawn. “We feel uniforms are necessary in the present times to inculcate a sense of discipline, attachment, uniformity and identity among the students,” he said.
Kharel said the large number of students was one reason why uniforms had been introduced. “We have more than 2,500 students. It is impossible to identify all of them giving opportunity to outsiders to enter the college campus and create mischief,” said the principal. The uniform, the principal believes, will also discourage students to indulge in bad habits, said Kharel. “Students in uniform will be spotted immediately outside the campus if they take drugs and alcohol.” The principal said uniforms would also remove the rich-poor discrimination and save many parents from unnecessary fashion expenditure.
Tadong college is the second government college in Sikkim to have uniforms after Law College in Gangtok. 
Tea Talks
TT, Siliguri: The tripartite meeting between labour minister Anadi Sahu, stakeholders of tea industry and the state labour commissioner that was held in Calcutta on Monday ended without any results. The meeting was held to discuss the interim wage hike. Another tripartite meeting has been called on September 9, a trade union leader said.
One hacked
TT, Jaigaon: Saroj Kalikotay, 40, of Chhetri Line in Dalsinghpara panchayat, was hacked to death on Sunday. Police said neighbours Bidhan Mangar and Manjit Rai have been arrested. The two had an altercation with Kalikotay over money which led to the murder, the police said. The duo were produced in the additional chief judicial magistrate’s court in Alipurduar on Monday and have been remanded in jail custody for 14 days. (KalimpongNews:Kalikotay was a travelling agent.)
A protest rally against Gorkhaland agitation was brought by Amra Bangali in Siliguri declaring formation of Bangali Regiment (Photo:Bartaman)
The President, Smt. Pratibha Devisingh Patil presenting the Tenzing Norgay National Adventure Award-2009 to Ms. Chandraprabha Aitwal for Life Time Achievement, in a glittering ceremony, at Rashtrapati Bhawan, in New Delhi on August 29, 2010.(PIB)
Pothole protest clamp on 1500 buses
TT, Siliguri, Aug. 30: Around 1,500 private buses that ferry nearly 1 lakh passengers daily will stay off the roads in the three districts of Darjeeling, Jalpaiguri and Cooch Behar indefinitely from tomorrow to protest the crater-filled routes so infamous in north Bengal.
The bus owners have also demanded the refund of the road tax for the past two quarters.
While the buses will ply within Darjeeling district, they will not be available for travel inside Jalpaiguri and Cooch Behar. No buses will ply among the three districts either, or from Jalpaiguri and Cooch Behar to the rest of north Bengal.
A delegation under the banner of the North Bengal Passenger Transport Owners’ Coordination Committee met Jalpaiguri divisional commissioner A.K. Singh this afternoon and intimated him their decision while demanding that the road tax deposited with the motor vehicles department be refunded.
“The road condition of both national and state highways has been at its worst in the three districts for the past six months. We made several correspondences, submitted memorandums and had even resorted to strikes to pressure the state government and the National Highways Authority of India to repair the roads at the earliest, but nothing happened,” said Pranab Mani, the secretary of the co-ordination committee today.
“Now we are determined to keep our vehicles off the roads unless their conditions improve. It is not possible for us to bear additional costs like repairing our vehicles every time after a trip,” said Chandi Sarkar, a co-ordination committee member from Jalpaiguri.
Depending on the type of vehicle — whether it is local or an express — the bus owners pay tax ranging from Rs 2,500 to Rs 4,500.
“Even after paying tax on a regular basis, we have to ply vehicles on routes where there is hardly any bitumen cover with huge ditches spread across several kilometres. We have asked the divisional commissioner to refund us the tax paid against each bus for the past two quarters and unless the roads are completely repaired, the motor vehicles department cannot charge us any tax,” Mani said. The 1,500-odd vehicles that will remain off the roads also include minibuses and maxis.
“On an average 60 persons travel on each of the 1,500 vehicles a day. That would be around 90,000 passengers. But some buses can carry more than 60 people. So we ferry 1 lakh passengers a day. Of them 20,000 are daily commuters like students, teachers and office-goers,’ said Mani.
Two national highways — NH31 and NH31D — pass through all three districts. The condition of both the roads is deplorable. Since the beginning of this year, the bus owners alleged, the state PWD and the NHAI have been passing the buck on each other. NH31D, which connects Siliguri to Jalpaiguri, is an example. “For the past six months, nobody knew who was responsible for maintaining the road. When the NHAI floated a tender for a Rs 90 lakh work order earlier this month, we realised that the state PWD had finally handed over its responsibility. But they never disclosed it before,” said Mani.
The decision of indefinite bus strike has put the daily commuters in a fix. “Even today, there are several places in north Bengal where there is no train connectivity. We have to depend absolutely on buses, that too private ones as throughout the day, hardly one or two government buses ply on these routes,” said Subrata Mukherjee, a schoolteacher who travels daily from Siliguri to Mathabhanga in Cooch Behar.
Divisional commissioner Singh said instructions to patch up the roads had been given. “Work has also commenced and soon, the road conditions will improve. We have asked the bus owners to refrain from strike,” he said.
Officials from the NHAI said they had initially issued a tender for repairing NH31D connecting Siliguri with Jalpaiguri. “Two other tender notices have been floated for further repair of the national highways in the region,” an official said.
For the stretch of NH31 that connects Sevoke to Bagdogra, PWD officials said they had started the repair but had to stop because of the rain.
“We expect to resume the work by this week,” an official said. The Hill Cart Road or NH55 that connects Darjeeling to the plains is shut since June 16 because of the cave-in at Paglajhora. Last week, NH31A, Sikkim’s only road link, was struck by seven landslides and was shut for three days.
KalimNews: 15 Primary Teachers' appointment is cancelled after the investigation. It includes  Anita Paul wife of the suspended District Primary School Board's Chairman Mrinal Paul some of the sons and daughters of the Dist Primary School Board members and prominent CPM leaders . It also includes three sons and daughters of KK Jha a prominent CPM leader of Nagarkatta.
Rockvale Academy won Inter ICSE School debate competition.
 पीडित शरणार्थीले भात मागेका हौं
केही महिना अघिबाट भूटानी शरणार्थी शिविरहरुमा विश्व खाद्य कार्याक्रमले गरेको प्रमाणीकरण पछि धेरै शरणाार्थीहरु भोकभोकै बस्नु पर्ने वाध्यतामा छन् । पछिल्लो समय राशन उपलव्धका लागि पटक पटक क्याम्प व्यवस्थापन समितिले जिल्ला प्रशासन कार्यालय झापा र सम्बन्धीत निकायसँग पहल नगरेका पनि होइनन् । तथापी अझै ३ हजार बढी शरणार्थीहरुलाई हरेक दिनको गाँसको समस्याले पिरोलिरहेको छ । यी पीडित शरणार्थीको राशन उपलब्ध गराउनको लागि अनुरोध गर्न केही समय अघि सात शिविरको प्रतिनिधित्व गर्दै राहत बन्चित पीडित शरणार्थी समूह गठन भएको छ । समूहले हाल पीडित शरणार्थीलाई राशन उपलव्ध गराउँन विभिन्न गुनासोहरु राख्दै आएको छ । समूहका संयोजक नन्दु पौडेलसँग डिकेश लामाले गर्नु भएको कुराकानीको सार संक्षेप ।
राहत बन्चित पीडित समूह किन गठन गर्नु भयो हामी शरणार्थीहरु सबै एकै हौं सवैले पाईरहेको राशन एकासी रोक्का गर्न थाले पछि सम्बन्धीत निकाय सँग सहयोग गर्न पहलको लागि यो समूह गठन गरेको हो ।
तपाईहरुले पछिल्लो पल्ट सार्वजनिक गरेको विवरण कसरी संकलन गर्नु भयो हामीले यो समूह सवै पीडितहरुको लागि भनेर गठन गरेका हौं र हाम्रो कसैको एकै घरका आधाको राशन छ त कसैको छैन यसले गर्दा पनि हामीलाई विवरण संकलनमा सवै तहबाट सहयोग पुगेकेा छ । मुख्य गरेर क्याम्प व्यवस्थापन समितिको महत्वपूर्ण सहयोग रहेको छ भने समूह सातै शिविरको अनुगमनमा हिडेको पनि छ ।
क्याम्पमा यस विवरण बाहेक बालबालिकाको पनि धेरैको राहत छैन भन्ने तपाईले जानकारी दिनु भयो नि कति छन् ।
हामीले प्रकाशित गरेको प्रेश विज्ञप्तीमा नै भनेका छौं कि ३ हजार १ सय ९० शरणाार्थी बाहेक अरु पनि निक्कै संख्यामा मिश्रिति विवाहबाट तथा अन्य कारणले अभिभावक विहीन बालबालिकाहरु छन् । अर्को कुरा भूटानमा त्यहाँको सरकारले बन्दी बनाएर राखेका हाम्रा नातेदारहरु पनि आउने क्रम जारी छ । अव तपाई भन्नुहोस् सवै परिवार यहाँ बसे पछि एउटा नेपाली भाषी भूटानीले शिविरमा आउँदा शरणार्थीको दर्जा पाउने कि नपाउने ।
जेलबाट छुटेर आउने शरणार्थीलाई पहिले त ऊ शरणार्थी हो कि होइन छुट्याउनु परेन र त्यो जरुर हो हामीले पनि गैर शरणार्थीलाई राशन दे भनेका छइनौं । पहिले पहिले जेलबाट आउनेहरुको लागि भूटानी हो कि होइन त्यसको लागि यूएनएचसीआर आफै काँकडभिट्टामा स्क्रीनिड्ड पोष्ट खडा गरी जाँचचेक गरी प्रमाणिकरण गरिन्थ्यो तर अहिले त्यो पनि छैन । तर उसको परिचयको लागि हाम्रा जेल जिवन भोगेर आउने शरणाार्थीको भूटानी परिचय सम्बन्धी कागजात भने अवश्य छ ।
तपाई पनि जेल बस्नु भएको रे हो हो म पनि भूटानको केन्द्रिय जेल चेम्गाड्डमा साढे चार बर्ष र अन्य क्षेत्रका जेलमा गरी लगभग ९ बर्ष जति जेलमा बसे ।
जेलमा याताना दियो कि दिएन जवसम्म रेडक्रसले जेलको भिजिट गरेन त्यतिखेर सम्म चाँही खाना खाँदा समेत पशुले जस्तो कुदेर गएर खाना खानु पथ्र्यो भने वाँड्दा बाँढ्दै खाना पुगेन भने कोही भोकै पनि बस्नु पथ्र्यो । कहिले बरफमा सुताउँथ्यो कहिले साह्रै नराम्री कुट्थ्यो । याताना त कति सहियो सहियो नि । तर जव सन् १९९३ बाट अन्तराष्ट्रिय रेडक्रस संगठन र एम्नेष्टीले पहल र जेलबन्दीले पाउनु पर्ने अन्तराष्ट्रिय अधिकारको कुराहरु केही हदसम्म लागु भयो ।
भोलि ६ तारिख यो पेन डाउँन कार्यक्रम किन गर्न लाग्नु भयो यो कार्यक्रम भन्दा पनि हामीलाई भात देऊ भन्ने आवाज गरेका हौं जुन आवाज निकाल्न सवै निकायले सहयोग गर्नु भएको छ । यसका लागि सवै भन्दा पहिले सातै शिविरका सचीव र सीएमसी परिवारको ठूलो सहयोग छ । पेन डाउन भनेको एक दिन सातै शिविरको सम्पुर्ण काम कार्वाही वन्द गरेर सम्बन्धीत निकायमा हाम्रो भात देऊको अनुरोधको कार्यक्रम यो र ६ तारिख हाम्रो यो कार्यक्रम सफल हुन्छ नै ।
अझै पनि पीडित शरणाार्थीलाई राशन मिलेन भने नि हामी भात मागिरहन्छौ माग्दा पनि सुनवाई नभए सार्वजनिक स्थलमा बसेर भोकहड्ताल गर्ने अनि जेनेभा लगायतका शरणार्थी सम्बन्धी उच्च निकायमा हाम्रो अवस्थालाई सुनवाई नभएको गुनासो राख्ने हाम्रो समूहको योजना रहेको छ । यसको लागि यो समूह सवै शरणार्थी र स्थानीय सरोकारवाला संस्थामा सहयोगको लागि आग्रह गर्दछ ।
प्रस्तुतीः डिकेश लामा
Yechuri for all party
TH: A dialogue process involving representatives of all political forces in the Darjeeling hills should be initiated to find a way out of the political impasse in the region, Sitaram Yechury, member of the Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), said on Sunday. “All political forces should be brought on board in efforts to find a solution to the problems of the region that might require various stages of dialogue,” Mr. Yechury told The Hindu over telephone.
He had gone to Darjeeling to attend an event commemorating the 110th birth anniversary of Ratanlal Brahmin who was a prominent figure in the communist movement in the hills.
The CPI(M) will raise, both in Parliament and outside, the need to invite all political parties of the hills for talks to break the deadlock in the region, Mr. Yechury said.
So far the Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) has been the only political party that has been invited to the tripartite talks with the Centre and the State Government to discuss matters related to the region. The next round of talks is scheduled for next month. “We want the Centre to invite all the political forces in the region in future talks”, Mr. Yechury said.
All outstanding issues will, however, have to be resolved within the framework of the State with maximum autonomy and full rights to the people of the hills to determine how best the resources can be utilised for the development of the region, the CPI (M) MP said.
Keen on dialogue
TH:The State government too is keen on dialogue with all of the region's political forces, Minister for Urban Development Ashok Bhattacharya said. On the tripartite talks, he said, “Let the tripartite talks continue, but the other political parties should also be involved in them.”
“We hope that the GJM appreciates the political reality in the region,” Mr. Bhattacharya said, referring to the growing resistance of the people against the violent forces in the hills.
The non-GJM parties who have been demanding participation in such talks, have been critical of the autocratic ways of the GJM. They have been demanding a restoration of democracy in the hills.TNN, DARJEELING: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha has withdrawn the indefinite strike called in Darjeeling hills from Monday in view of the tripartite talks with the Centre and government West Bengal government on September 7.
The decision was announced by GJM General Secretary Roshan Giri after a meeting with the Darjeeling District Magistrate and Superintendent of Police Devendra Pratap Singh.
The indefinite strike had been called to demand production of Nicole Tamang, the main suspect behind the May 21 killing of Gorkha leader Madan Tamang in the town, in court by Monday.
To press for the demand, Giri said batches of seven GJM supporters would fast in Kalimpomg, Kurseong and Darjeeling from September 1 to 17.
A GJM 'investigation team' has also been formed, he said, adding it would leave for Assam and Nepal in search of Nicole.
He also announced that henceforth government and Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council offices in the hills would be allowed to function unhindered.

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