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Sunday, June 12, 2011

गोर्खा जनमुक्ति मोर्चाले गोर्खाल्याण्डको सवालमा धोका दियो...... भागोपले मनसुनबाट गोर्खाल्याण्डको निम्ति काम गर्ने... GJM on statehood course: MLA... Ramdev breaks fast, .... Sex racket busted in Gangtok ..... Joint panel proposed to thrash out local tea storms.... Gorkha Janamukti Morcha in a new role? ..... Kalimpong to host music fest in August ...

मोर्चाको सेटअपमाथि के भन्छन्‌ त देशका गोर्खाहरू?
गोर्खा जनमुक्ति मोर्चाले गोर्खाल्याण्डको सवालमा धोका दियो
मनोज वोगटी, कालिमन्युज, कालेबुङ,12 जून। अन्ततः मोर्चाले आफ्नो लुकाएर राखेको असली अनुहार देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई देखायो। यसै भन्छन्‌, दार्जीलिङ बाहिरका गोर्खाहरू,जो छुट्टैराज्य चहान्छन्‌। उनीहरू भन्छन्‌, क्षेत्रीय विकासको निम्ति आन्दोलन गरेको थियो भने हामीलाई किन आशा देखायो? छुट्टै राज्य भनेकोले नै हामीले आन्दोलनहरूलाई समर्थन गरेका थियौं।
वास्तवमा गोर्खा जनमुक्ति मोर्चाको आन्दोलन पैसा र चौकीको निम्ति नै थिएछ। मोर्चाको आन्दोलन थिएछ, क्षेत्रीय विकासको निम्ति। विकास नै चहान्थ्यो भने किन गोर्खाल्याण्डको आन्दोलन भन्यो? अहिले प्रश्नैप्रश्न उठाइरहेका छन्‌ दार्जीलिङ बाहिरका गोर्खाहरू। छुट्टैराज्यको निम्ति दार्जीलिङ नै उपयुक्त क्षेत्र थियो, यसैकारण देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूले यहीं राज्य बनाउनको निम्ति आन्दोलनलाई समर्थन गरेका थिए। तर मोर्चाले यो क्षेत्रमा राज्य हुनुपर्छ भनेर देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूले दिएको समर्थनबाट फाइदा लुट्यो। मोर्चाले देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई धोका दियो। यसरी मोर्चामाथि अहिले तीब्र प्रतिक्रिया भइरहेको छ देशभरि नै।
मोर्चाले गोर्खाल्याण्डको नाम गरी दार्जीलिङ र केही अंश डुवर्स,तराईको फाइदाको निम्ति सेटअप थाप्ने भएपछि विभिन्न प्रकारका प्रतिक्रियाहरू आइरहेको छ। क्षेत्रको विकासको निम्ति हो भने क्षेत्रीय दलको हिसाबमा मोर्चाले ठीकै काम गर्‍यो। तर मोर्चा र विमल गुरूङले आन्दोलन गोर्खाल्याण्डको निम्ति गरेको भनेर देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई ढॉंटे। देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई झुक्काएर आफ्नो ठॉंउको विकासको निम्ति फाइदा लुटे। यस्तो फाइदा नै लुट्‌नुथियो भने, अघि नै भन्नुपर्थ्यो, कमसेकम देशभरिका गोर्खाहरू र सङ्घ-सङ्गठनहरूले आफ्नो पहल गर्ने थियो। मोर्चाले त वास्तवमा गोर्खाल्याण्डको आन्दोलन र आकांक्षीहरूको सपनासित नै खेलवाड़ गर्‍यो। यसप्रकारका टिप्पणीहरू गर्दा उनीहरू जति मर्माहत देखिन्थे, त्यति नै मर्माहत देखिन्थे दार्जीलिङले धोका दिएको सम्झिएर। 
विशेष अनुष्ठानको निम्ति कालेबुङ आइपुगेका विभिन्न राज्यका विभिन्न सङ्गठनहरूका गोर्खा प्रतिनिधिहरूलाई केवल दुइवटा प्रश्न राखेको थियो-1. गोर्खा जनमुक्ति मोर्चाले ल्याएको व्यवस्था नै गोर्खाल्याण्ड हो? के ठान्छन्‌ देशभरिका गोर्खाहरू यो व्यवस्था र छुट्टैराज्यको सम्बन्धमा? 2.मोर्चाले आर्थिक सम्पन्नता नै चिन्हारी हो भनिरहेको छ, सही हो? उनीहहरूले यसको जवाबमा के भने, पढ्‌नुहोस्‌-
नित्यानन्द उपाध्याय,असम।
1. दार्जीलिङलाई दिइरहेको व्यवस्था जस्तो गोर्खा डेभलोपमेन्ट काउन्सिल त हामीलाई असम सरकारले दिएकै छ, तर हामीले गोर्खाल्याण्ड भनेको यस्तो काउन्सिलहरूको निम्ति होइन। देशमा गोर्खाहरू विभिन्न क्षेत्रमा नै असुरक्षित र किनारीकृत छन्‌। उनीहरूलाई देशको मूलस्रोतमा ल्याउनको निम्ति, उनीहरूको चिन्हारी देशमा सुनिश्चित गर्नको निम्ति गोर्खाल्याण्ड राज्य हुनुपर्छ भनेका हौ, र समर्थन पनि गरेका हौं। दार्जीलिङमा विकास त हुनुपर्छ, तर यो विकासको निम्ति पनि गोर्खाल्याण्ड शब्दको दुरूपयोग गर्नु? देशभरिका गोर्खाहरुको समर्थन लिएर आफ्नो फाइदा लुट्‌नु? मोर्चाले जे गर्‍यो क्षेत्रीय सवालमा ठीकै छ तर राष्ट्रिय सवालमा ठीक भएन। मुद्दाबाट हटेर सेटअप थाप्नु दुर्भाग्य हो।
2. सम्पन्न त अमेरिकामा रहेका गोर्खाहरू पनि सम्पन्न छन्‌, तरै पनि उनीहरू गोर्खाल्याण्डको आन्दोलन हुँदैछ भनेर किन सहयोग गर्छन्‌‌‌ त? यो व्यवस्थाले यो क्षेत्रका गोर्खाहरूलाई आर्थिक सम्पन्न त गराउँला उसो भए देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूले गोर्खाल्याण्ड राज्य माग्न छोड्नु त? सिन्धीहरू सम्पन्न छन्‌, खै त उनीहरूको चिन्हारी? रुपियॉं चिन्हारी हो भन्नेहरू निश्चय नै आर्थिक विपन्नहरू होलान्‌।
मोतिलाल तिम्सिना,मेघालय
1. हामीलाई मेघालयमा मन्दरी(विदेशी)को लाञ्छना लगाइन्छ। त्यहॉंका गोर्खाहरू असुरक्षित छन्‌, हामीलाई हाम्रो थलो देखाउने राज्य चाहिएको छ। यसैकारण छुट्टैराज्य गोर्खाल्याण्डको आन्दलनलाई समर्थन गरिरहेका छौं। खुलेर समर्थन गर्ने परिस्थिति नभए पनि हामीले त्यहॉंबाट गर्नुपर्ने सहयोग गरिरहेका छौं। त्यहॉं भोटरलिष्टमा गोर्खाहरूको नाम आउनु हुँदैन भनेर सरकारी आदेश नै छ। यस्तो बेला हाम्रो राज्य भए हाम्रो पक्षमा बोल्ने मुख्यमन्त्री हुनेथियो। हाम्रो चिन्हारी बनिनेथियो।
अहिले गोर्खाल्याण्ड आन्दोलन गरिरहेको मोर्चाले गोर्खाल्याण्डको नाममा आन्दोलन गरी दार्जीलिङ पहाड़को विकासको निम्ति स्थायी व्यवस्था थापेर छुट्टैराज्यको सवालमा अवरोध खड़ा गरेको बुझिएको छ। मोर्चाले जे सुकै गरोस्‌ तर चिन्हारीको निम्ति छुट्टैराज्यको आन्दोलन त हुने नै छ अनि यो सफल पनि हुने छ।
2. म सम्पन्न छु, खै मेरो चिन्हारी? यो वाहियात कुरा हो।
शिव लामा कार्की, मनीपुर
1. दार्जीलिङ अनि यसको वरिपरिको क्षेत्र मिलाएर राज्य भए हामी मनिपुरबाट यहॉं बसाईँ सर्ने होइन। दार्जीलिङ बाहिरका कोही पनि यहॉं आउने होइनन्‌। यो ठॉंउ उपयुक्त छ भनेर,यहीं राज्य हुनुपर्छ भनेका हौं तर यहॉंका दलहरूले भने आफ्नो फाइदाको काम बनाउन गोर्खाल्याण्ड राज्यको नाममा स्वार्थपूर्ण आन्दोलन गरेको दुइपल्ट भयो। अहिलेको सेटअपले यहॉंको विकास हुन्छ राम्रो हो, तर आन्दोलन सकिएको छैन। 
यहॉंका दलहरू विकासको कुरा पाएर आन्दोलन सकेको र यही गोर्खाल्याण्ड हो भन्छ भने, यो सरासर स्वार्थी कुरा हो। यहॉंको विकासले भारतभरिका गोर्खाहरूको चिन्हारी बनिँदैन। चिन्हारीको निम्ति देशका गोर्खाहरू कटिबद्ध छन्‌ भने कुनै पनि अवस्थामा राष्ट्रिय स्वर छुट्टैराज्यको दाबीमा उठ्‌ने नै छ।
2. यहॉंको विकास, सबै गोर्खाहरूको चिन्हारी होइन। यो कुरा बुझेन भने, तिनले मुद्दा नै बुझेका छैनन्‌ भनेर जान्दा हुन्छ।
निर्मल कुमार पुन,मिजोराम
1.कालेबुङ आउँदा रेलमा बङ्गाली बन्धुहरूसित हिजो पनि कुराकानी भयो, उनीहरूले हामीलाई नेपाल को हो? भनेर सोधे। यो प्रश्नसित हामी अहिलेदेखि जुझिरहेका छैनौं। दार्जीलिङकाहरूले यो प्रश्नसित जुझ्न पर्नु नपर्नु यहॉंको बेग्लै परिस्थिति होला, तर देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई चिन्हारीको संकट छ। भारतमा पनि गोर्खाहरू छन्‌, उनीहरूको पनि ठाउँ ठेगाना छ भनेर देशका अन्य नागरिकहरूलाई थाहा छैन। यसै कारण छुट्टैराज्य गोर्खाहरूको पनि हुनुपर्छ भन्ने माग उठेको हो। नत्र यहॉंको विकासको निम्ति हामीले किन समर्थन गर्नु? 
घिसिङ र विमललाई हामीले समर्थन गरेको यहॉंको विकासको निम्ति होइन। फेरि किन दार्जीलिङ बाहिरका गोर्खाहरूको भावनासित आफ्नै दाजुभाइले खेलवाड़ गर्ने काम हुन्छ? जे भए पनि चिन्हारीको निम्ति आन्दोलन हुने नै छ। देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई अझ बलियो पार्ने काम यसपल्टको धोकाले पनि गरेको छ।
2.पैसाले चिन्हारी बनिने हो भने, देशमा सबै गोर्खाहरू कङ्गाल मात्र छन्‌ र? यो क्षेत्रीय सवाल हुनसक्ला, राष्ट्रिय होइन। किन भने गोर्खाल्याण्डको मुद्दा क्षेत्रीय होइन, राष्ट्रिय हो।
प्रवीण खालिङ, सिक्किम
1.सिक्किमबाट गोर्खाल्याण्डको आन्दोलनलाई समर्थन गरेको कुनै दल र नेतालाई हेरेर होइन। हामीले गोर्खाल्याण्ड शब्द जोड़िएको आन्दोलनलाई समर्थन गरेका हौं। सिक्किमका गोर्खाल्याण्डपप्रेमीहरू छुट्टैराज्यको कुनै विकल्प देख्दैनन्‌। दल र नेताहरूले यदि विकल्प देख्छन्‌ भने त्यो आन्दोलन र नेता गोर्खाल्याण्डको निम्ति नै होइन। अहिले यही गोर्खाल्याण्ड हो भन्ने कुरा आइरहेको छ, त्यो उनीहरूको मानसिकता हो। 
देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूले चिन्हारीको निम्ति गोर्खाल्याण्ड भन्दैछ तर आन्दोनकारी दल र नेताले विकासको निम्ति भन्दैछ भने क्षेत्रीय मानसिकता र राष्ट्रिय मानसिकताबीचको पार्थक्यता हो। राष्ट्रियरूपमा आन्दोलनको आवश्यकताबोध अहिले सबैले गरिरहेका छन्‌, निश्चय नै यसले दिशा पक्रिनेछ।
2. आर्थिकरूपले सम्पन्न हुनु चिन्हारी हो भने,देशमा सबैभन्दा धनी गोर्खा मणिकुमार सुब्बा हुन्‌, तिनको नागरिकताको प्रश्न भारत देशमा फेरि किन  उठ्‌छ त? पवन चामलिङ जस्तो मुख्यमन्त्रीको नागरिकताको प्रश्न किन उठ्‌छ? जबसम्म छुट्टैराज्य गोर्खाहरूको हुँदैन,चिन्हारी स्पष्ट बन्दैन। आर्थिक सम्पन्न हुनु नै चिन्हारी भन्नेहरूले आफ्नो कुरा गरेको हुनसक्छ।
विगे्रडियर एनबीएस विष्ट, देहरादुन
1.मोर्चाले गरेको आन्दोलन केवल दार्जीलिङको लागि भएको प्रमाणित भयो। आन्दोलन यहीँ सकिएको होइन। क्षेत्रीय समस्या समाधान पो भयो त, देशभरिका चिन्हारीको संकट त छँदैछ। आन्दोलन त चल्नेछ। दार्जीलिङको यो दुर्घटनाले देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई सङ्गठित गर्ने प्रेरणा दिएको छ। 
दार्जीलिङको विकास हुन्छ, यसमा शुभकामना छ। मोर्चाको आन्दोलन क्षेत्रीय विचार हो। यो प्राप्ती पनि क्षेत्रीय हो। देशभरिका गोर्खाहरू यहॉंको क्षेत्रीय समस्या समाधान गर्नको निम्ति होइन। दार्जीलिङले आन्दोलन गरेकोमा आशा गरिएको थियो। विकासको निम्ति गोर्खाल्याण्ड नामको आन्दोलन कुण्ठाइयो। यही गोर्खाल्याण्ड होइन। देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूले कुरा बुझिसकेका छन्‌। गोर्खाल्याण्डको आन्दोलन सकिएको छैन।
2.पैसाले कहॉं चिन्हारी बन्छ? ढॉंटेको होला। उनीहरूको निम्ति त चिन्हारी नै हो, देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूको निम्ति होइन।
जोएल राई, दिल्ली
1. जुन कुरा पाइएको छ, यो दार्जीलिङको लागि होला। त्यो पनि किटेर भन्न सकिन्न, किन भने फाइनल भएको छैन। जुन आन्दोलन थियो यो चिजको निम्ति थिएन। यो सम्झौताले देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूको आकांक्षा पुरा गर्दैन। यो यहॉंको 20 लाख गोर्खाहरूको मात्र समस्याको समाधान हो, हामीले 1 करोड़ 50 लाख गोर्खाहरूको समस्याको समाधानको कुरा अहिलेसम्म देशलाई गरिरहेका हौं। यहॉं भन्दा धेर गोर्खाहरू भएका राज्यहरू पनि छन्‌, जसले केवल गोर्खाल्याण्ड भनिरहेका छन्‌। त्यहॉंको विकासको कुरालाई उनीहरूले देशभरि हल्ला गरिरहेका छैनन्‌।
2. क्षेत्रीय विकासको निम्ति त क्षेत्रीय आन्दोलन देशभरि नै गोर्खाहरूले गरिरहेका छन्‌, सबैले एक स्वरमा देशभरिबाट देशमा गोर्खाहरूको चिन्हारी निश्चित गराउन, देशमा गोर्खाहरूलाई राष्ट्रिय मान्यता हुनुपर्छ भन्ने मागमा आन्दोलित छन्‌। तर ती गोर्खाहरू झैं गोर्खाहरूको आधिक्य रहेको दार्जीलिङले आन्दोलन गरेको अनि राज्यको निम्ति यही ठाउँ सबैपक्षबाट ठीक मानिएकोले देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूले समर्थन गरेका हुन्‌, तर देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई उनीहरूको आकांक्षाको सवालमा धोका दिइने काम भएको छ। क्षेत्रीय समस्याको सवालमा यही व्यवस्था राम्रो पनि हो। तर गोर्खाल्याण्ड राज्यको निम्ति गरिएको आन्दोलनको अर्थमा पनि गोर्खाहरूले गोर्खाहरूलाई नै धोका दिने काम यहीँबाट भयो। यही अन्त भने होइन, यहॉं आन्दोलन सकिए पनि देशभरिका गोर्खाहरू छुट्टैराज्यको निम्ति आन्दोलित छन्‌।
भागोपले मनसुनबाट गोर्खाल्याण्डको निम्ति काम गर्ने

मनोज वोगटी, कालिमन्युज, कालेबुङ,12 जून। भारतीय गोर्खा परिसङ्घले राष्ट्रिय कार्यकारीहरूको अर्धवार्षिक सम्मेलन यहॉंको एउटा होटलमा गर्‍यो। जहॉं भागोपले केही प्रस्तावहरू ग्रहण गरेको छ। प्रस्ताव अनुसार अहिले मोर्चाले ल्याएको व्यवस्थालाई स्वागत जनाइएको छ। 
स्वागत जनाउँदै पनि यो व्यवस्थाले देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूको आकांक्षा पुरा नहुने भएकोले बङ्गालबाट छुट्टिएरै छुट्टैराज्य हुनुपर्ने सम्बन्धमा भागोपले मनसुनदेखि कार्य गर्ने भएको छ। विभिन्न राज्यमा नयॉं सरकार गठन गर्नेहरूलाई स्वागत गर्दै प्रस्ताव लिएको छ भने ममता व्यानर्जीलाई पनि अभिनन्दन जनाइएको छ। यसरी नै देशमा भइरहेको भ्र्रष्टचार निर्मूल गर्न पनि भागोपले पहल गर्ने भएको छ। दुइदिने सम्मेलनमा लिएको प्रस्ताव अनुसार सरकारले नेपाली भाषालाई सरकारीरूपले प्रयोग गर्नुपर्ने सम्बन्धमा पनि माग गर्ने भएको छ। 
शिक्षामा सशक्त अभियान हुनुपर्ने अनि सिक्किम सरकारलाई गोर्खाल्याण्डको प्रस्ताव लिएकोमा आभार प्रकट पनि भागोपले प्रस्तावमा लेखेको छ। भागोपको अन्तिम प्रस्तावमा लेखिए अनुसार भागोपको शाखाहरूले देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूलाई गोर्खाल्याण्डको समर्थनमा ल्याइने भएको छ। यता भागोप अध्यक्ष दिलकुमारी भण्डारीले भागोपले नयॉं रणनीतिमा देशभरिकै गोर्खाहरूलाई लिएर गोर्खाल्याण्डको निम्ति काम गर्ने बताएकी छन्‌। भागोप कार्यकारी अध्यक्ष, सचिव सुखमन मोक्तान, प्रवक्ता जोएल राईले मोर्चाले यस क्षेत्रको निम्ति जुन व्यवस्था ल्याएको छ, त्यो ठीकै रहेको तर यसले देशभरिका गोर्खाहरूको आकांक्षा पुरा नगर्ने बताउँदै उप्रान्त भागोपले दह्रोसित छुट्टैराज्यको निम्ति पहल गर्ने जनाएका छन्‌।
GJM on statehood course: MLA
Caesar Mandal, TNN , Jun 13, KALIMPONG: Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) has taken a crucial step towards achieving their demand for a separate state by signing the latest agreement with chief minister Mamata Banerjee, which ensures a new council with more geographical area and maximum autonomy, feels Harka Bahadur Chhetri, senior GJM leader and MLA from Kalimpong.
In an exclusive interview with ToI at Kalimpong, Chhetri's home town, the leader clarified how the agreement ensures financial self-sufficiency for the proposed new council, which will help the GJM to strengthen their statehood demand in near future. "Except home (read policing) and judiciary, we achieved all the major powers needed for a state," said Chhetri. Disclosing the important components of the agreement related to finance, he said, "The new agreement says that soon after the formation of the new council, the body will be empowered to collect all the revenues which state government collects from the area at present.
The revenue for the Union government will continue to go as before." Pointing out the significance of Touzi, the GJM leader said it's a section of law under state's land and land reforms act which decides the lease period, amount and cancellation of a lease agreement of tea garden lands. Tea gardens have a major stake in the total revenue earned from the area. "According to the agreement, new council will be entitled to enforce Tauzi, which suggests that the council will have the right to lease out teagarden lands and fix up its amount," said Chhetri. He feels it will be crucial for financial autonomy of the new setup. The state government earns Rs 101 crore from tea gardens of Darjeeling. "Now, per hectre lease amount is Rs 32 from where garden-owners earn Rs 6 lakh. A revision of lease rate is required," he said, hinting that tea garden lands will be costlier in new council's regime.
Chhetri also claimed that the council has been empowered to distribute power generated by National Hydro Power Corporation, which will be another major source of revenue. He feels the agreement made their task easy to get a separate state and repeatedly gave importance on economic autonomy. "We have planned for infrastructural development utilizing the revenue in next few years before going for a fresh statehood movement," once again confirming that the GJM never gave up their Gorkhaland demand.
He, however, hinted that they are in a bid to develop all required infrastructure for a state in next few years to avoid dependency on West Bengal. He claimed that except some little similarities, the new council will be entirely different from the excommittee report. "We have demanded 302 mauzas and the committee will decide after a thorough survey," he said, hinting that Gorkhaland will not expand further towards the foothills. The territory issue is most crucial for the success of the agreement as most of the foothill dwellers (Adivasi and non-Gorkha, non-adivasi people) may put stiff resistance against this decision of inclusion.
Chhetri is aware of the matter and knows that state government may delay the process to please agitators in the foothills. "The new council will be functional only after area demarcation is completed. If government delays on this issue, the trouble will remain at the same place," warned Chhetri. Emphasizing on the administrative reforms, he revealed the GJM's basic roadmap of development where their initial focus will be on education, health and employment using natural resources of the land.
"The new council will be able to set up a new education board with new syllabus, cutting off links with the West Bengal's school education system," said Chhetri. The GJM topshot confirmed that the name of the new council is yet to be decided but said that 'Gorkhaland' word will be in the name, suggesting that the platform is now set for a separate state. Chhetri, however, confirmed Bimal Gurung will remain as the party head and the party has already finalized the name of the chairman to head the 50-member council. Chhetri, who has no doubt that the GJM will form the new council board following election, hinted that a new face will come up as the chairman
"The previus one was just like a puppet agency. But now we are mostly independent and will be able to introduce rules and regulations," the Kalimpong MLA said. He admitted that maximum administrative and financial autonomy played a key role behind the success of previous bipartite meeting with Mamata Banerjee. "Banerjee has a political will to solve the trouble. Her decision to form a high-power committee to review our demand for inclusion of the areas from Dooars and Terai where Nepali-speaking people are majority provides an official endorsement of the demand," said Chhetri.
जल विद्यतु परियोजनाको टनलमा एक मजदूरको मृत्य एक घाइते 

प्रवीण खालिंग, कालिमन्युज, जोरथाङ,12 जून। यहाँको रंगीत नदीमा निर्माणाधिन डान्स एनर्जी जल विद्युत परियोजनाको अडिट 2 को टनलमा अचानक माटो धस्किन्दा एक मजदूरको घटनास्थलमै मृत्यु भएको छ भने एक गम्भीर घाइते भएका छन्। सूत्र अनुसार डान्स एनर्जी प्राइवेट लिमिटेड एसईडब्लु माझीटार रातोमाटे मा आइतबार दिउँसो लगभग 12.25 बजी टनल भीत्र माटो धस्किन्दा  असमको रामपुर निवासी 45 वर्षीय धन बहादुर प्रधानको घटनास्थलमै मृत्यु भएको छ भने बिहारको मु्ज्जाफरपुर निवासी 22 वर्षीय विश्वदीप कुमार घाइते भएका छन्।
प्राप्त जानकारी अनुसार अडिट 2 मा 30 जना मजदूर कार्यरत छन् । मृतक प्रधान 6 महिनादेखि डान्स एनर्जीम मजदूरी गर्दै आफ्नो दुइ नानी अऩि पत्निसित माझीटारा बस्दै आएका थिए भने घाइते कुमार गत 2 महिनादेखि यहाँ कार्यरत थिए। पुलिसले मृतदेह उद्दार गरेर नाम्ची जिल्ला अस्पतालमा पोस्टमर्टमको निम्ति पठाएको छ भने भारतीय दण्ड संहिताको धारा 304 अन्तर्गत मामिला दर्ता गरेर विस्तृत छानवीन शुरु गरेको जानकारी प्राप्त भएको छ।
Headlines, KalimNews
KalimNews: ABGL is all set for protest on Kolkata accord on Gorkhaland.
Progressive Tea workers Union will observe bundh in Damdim TE of Western Dooars. CITU firm on not to give an inch of plains land to GJM.

Ramdev breaks fast, vows to continue campaign again corruption


Ashwini Shrivastava, PTI, Dehradun, June 12 : Yoga guru Baba Ramdev today broke his nine-day-old fast that sparked a political slugfest heeding appeals of spiritual and religious leaders but vowed to continue his campaign against corruption.
Spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravishankar, who met the 46-year-old yoga exponent for the third day at a Dehradun hospital to persuade him to give up his fast said, "Ramdev has broken his fast by taking juice."
"He ended the fast in the presence of various religious and spiritual leaders", The Art of Living Founder said.
Doctors said he will be discharged from hospital in two-three days though his condition is "stable".
The Congress and the BJP welcomed Ramdev's decision to end the fast.

Sex racket busted in GangtokNeighbour's Tip-off leads to raid on house in Arithang


Sikkim Times (sikkimnews.blogspot.com) GANGTOK, June 11: An alleged organised sex racket, operating out of a house in the Arithang area of Gangtok, was busted by the Sikkim police on Saturday.
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-8ecpi9NMhJg/TfORtDXQ5JI/AAAAAAAAImA/KBIaxKAhl8U/s1600/arithang.jpg
Arithang area
Working on a tip off from neighbour one Mr.Pradhan, a team led by SDPO, Gangtok Ms.Ongmu Bhutia and other police officials from Gangtok Sadar Thana, raided the house on night and took 5-6 persons into custody, including four women.The racket allegedely operated by a local lady who used her house to provide sex services to clients as reported by their neighbour to media.
SDPO Gangtok Ms.Ongmu Bhutia said those taken into custody have confirmed of alleged activities. They had been hired to work in the house where sex racket was flourishing.
The arrests were made under various sections of the Immoral Trafficking Prevention Act.
Local residents alleged that the sex racket had been thriving in house for at least six months now.
“We had sensed that something wrong was going on in that house.
“As we were not sure about what was going on, we had not informed the police earlier,” said Mr. Pradhan, who lives near the house.
Kalimpong to host music fest in August
TT, Kalimpong, June 12: August will mean a flurry of activity for Kalimpong with a music contest and quite a few sporting events promising a lot of entertainment.
Several aspiring singers and bands from the hills and the adjoining plains would flock to the town to participate in a day-long fest organised by the Kalimpong Artists’ Association on August 20.
The event will be held in the Town Hall.
Kalimpong is usually abuzz with a lot of activities in August and the organisers said the music fest will add to the charged up sporting atmosphere of the hill town.
The finals of five soccer events — Independence Cup, Mini Tournament, C Division Tournament, Inter-School Tournament and the Girls Football Tournament — are scheduled to be held throughout the month.
“The idea is to promote latent and upcoming talents in the field of music,” said Abhinash Chhetri, a member of the artists’ association.
The August Musical Dhamaka is open to everyone above the age of 13 and the participants can sing solo, duet or perform as a band. They can sing in Nepali, Hindi or English.
“This is our sincere effort to bring forth all the music talents from the region to Kalimpong for a healthy competition to foster in them the courage and confidence to perform in front of a large audience,” said Chhetri.
The first round of audition for the music fest would be on July 2 and 3 and the second round on July 30.
“The first round of audition will be held at the BMC Hall of Rockvale Academy while the venue for the second round will be announced on July 3,” said Chhetri.
Popular musicians from the hills would be judging the event, although the organisers have said their names would be announced later.
“Prizes will be given to the performers who bag the first three spots. On the day of the dhamaka local band Gipsy Caravan will give a special performance,” said Chhetri. The prizes have not yet been announced.
 
Joint panel proposed to thrash out local tea storms- Morcha workers’ union appreciates first-of-its-kind move by Darjeeling planters
A tea garden in Darjeeling
VIVEK CHHETRI, TT, Darjeeling, June 12: The Darjeeling Tea Association is planningto form a joint committee consisting of representatives of garden managements and trade unions to ensure that problems related to the industry are constantly addressed instead of allowing them to aggravate.
If the committee is formed, it will be the first of its kind in the industry in north Bengal. Of the nearly 80 gardens that produce the premier Darjeeling tea, 60 are affiliated to the DTA. The trade union of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha, which has agreed in principle to the DTA suggestion, is dominant in all the gardens.
DTA officials said the committee would help address the concerns of both the managements and the unions on a regular basis. “Instead of waiting for the unions to resort to dharnas and deputations, which disrupt the normal functioning of the garden, the committee could sit for dialogues on a regular basis to understand the members’ concern. If the committee is formed, it will be the first of its kind in the region,” said Sandeep Mukherjee, the secretary of the DTA, a planters’ body.
The committee would also be in a position to settle many issues locally instead of waiting for the management, almost all of whom are based in Calcutta, to constantly come up (to the hills) for the negotiations.
“If the unions have issues like drinking water and sanitation, we also have issues like constant encroachment on plantation area. Such issues can be solved through regular discussion.
“We would ideally want representatives from all operating unions in the Darjeeling hills to be on the panel so that there can be a consensus on decisions taken by the panel. The committee could invite members of the Tea Board and other government departments as and when needed,” said Mukherjee.
In fact, the DTA did invite all political parties for a preliminary meeting in Darjeeling yesterday. While the Morcha and the Congress-affiliated unions attended the discussion, the other three hill parties — the CPRM, the GNLF and the ABGL — stayed away. Industry observers said given the results of the just concluded Assembly election in which the Morcha has won all three hill seats, a nod from the party would suffice for such a committee to be made functional.
“While the GNLF had started forming some unions in the tea gardens before the elections, most had become dysfunctional in recent times with the union leaders resigning from the party. The ABGL and the Congress are yet to consolidate their bases in the gardens while the CPRM has some supporters on a few estates. A nod from the Morcha affiliated union would actually make the committee functional,” said an observer.
In fact, the Morcha union has welcomed the formation of such a committee. P.T. Sherpa, the president of the Morcha’s Darjeeling Terai Dooars Plantation Labour Union, said: “It is a very good suggestion and we have agreed in principle. However, the union alone cannot take a final call on the issue and we will place the proposal before the party for the final decision. On a personal note I would want the members of the Tea Board and other government departments which are involved with the tea industry to have representatives in the committee.”
The CPRM said unless its 11-point charter of demands that it had placed before the DTA was fulfilled, it saw little reason in attending meetings with the planters’ association. The demands include fringe benefits for plantation workers like increase in firewood and tea quotas, disbursement of quality umbrellas and footwears, construction of pucca labour houses and their repairs and regularisation of temporary workers who have worked for more than five years.
The DTA has decided to hold the next round of talks on June 26. “On that day the issue of wage negotiation for the sub-staff of the tea garden would also be discussed,” said Mukherjee.
Arson angle in bungalow fire probe - Mysterious calling bell raises suspicion of sabotage
ANIRBAN CHOUDHURY, TT, Alipurduar, June 12: The forest minister said he was not ruling out arson behind the destruction of Jayanti bungalow in a fire yesterday morning.
Hiten Barman’s comments came at a time investigators were focusing on a mysterious calling bell that rang at the building when the fire was raging.
“I have ordered a joint inquiry into the incident by the forest department and police. It is important to know the exact cause of the fire. We are not ruling out arson and I have asked the investigators to submit a report of the inquiry by Monday,” the minister said after visiting the site yesterday.
The 61-year-old picturesque bungalow at Jayanti in the Buxa Tiger Reserve was reduced to a heap of rubble in the fire yesterday morning. Nobody was injured as the building was vacant at the time of the incident.
Bikash Siddha, a forest guard, was sleeping in a shed near the structure. He was woken up by the calling bell around 1.30am. “I went outside and saw the bungalow in flames. A burning piece of wood almost hit me and I ran to the range officer’s quarters in the neighbourhood to wake him up.”
The bell was used by the guests staying in the bungalow to summon the service staff.
The guard said he and local people had managed to break a wooden stair that
Pradip Sarkar, the officer-in-charge of the Alipurduar fire station, said they had reached the spot around 2.45am yesterday. “We found that the fire had begun from the front. We reached the spot as soon as we could. But the bungalow made of wood rapidly burnt down.”
Jayanti is 37km from Alipurduar.
The principal chief conservator of forests, A. K. Raha, told The Telegraph, over phone from Calcutta that a team from the state forensic laboratory in Calcutta would visit the spot and collect samples to get to the root of the incident.
“There were no guests or forest staff in the bungalow on Friday night. The building was locked and no electrical appliance was operating. So, there are remote chances of a short circuit causing the fire. It is a mystery that the calling bell rang when no one was inside. We have come to know that the fire started from the front side of the building, far from where the main switch was placed. We are sending a forensic team to the spot,” said Raha.
The forest department lodged an FIR with Kalchini police station after the incident.
An investigating officer said the police had found a matchbox near the bungalow. “The matchbox was almost filled with sticks and lying close to the bungalow,” he said.
The subdivisional police officer of Alipurduar, David Lepcha, visited the spot today. “The remains of the charred building will not be removed till the forensic experts reach the spot to collect the samples for examination,” he said.
Barman said the foresters had been asked to prepare a plan to reconstruct the building. “The plan will be ready this month. The loss from the fire is about Rs 25 lakh.” 

No honking directive
Prabin Khaling, KalimNews, GANGTOK, June 12: Ranipool police station, whose jurisdiction extends up to Saraswati Mandir, 5th Mile up to 32 Mile, has enforced a no honking directive at the Ranipool bazaar area like it has been done in the Gangtok town.
‘No horn’ signboards have been put up at the Ranipool bridge along the NH 31A and in the bazaar area driving home a message to drivers for responsible driving and keeping down the irritant unnecessary honking urge.
“The people are happy with our drive as unnecessary honking has come down in the bazaar area”, said Ranipool police station in-charge police inspector Parshu Sharma.
“We have also put up signboards along the highway within our jurisdiction as a police helpline with our contact numbers so that anyone can inform us about their problems or any incidents which may occur”, said Sharma. 

SLYA seek seat
Prabin Khaling, KalimNews, GANGTOK, June 12: The Renjyong Mutanchi Rong Ong Shejum or Sikkim Lepcha Youth Association (SLYA) has submitted a memorandum to Chief Minister Pawan Chamling seeking ‘an equal distribution’ of seats in job reservation and higher studies quota with the Bhutia-Lepcha (BL) community.
This representation from the SLYA comes as it underlines the negligible representation of the Lepcha community in government services and higher education even from the 22 percent quota reserved for the BL community by the State government.
We request you to kindly grant 50 percent reservation out of the 22 percent reserve quota for BL, said the SLYA demanding a separate 11 percent reservation for Lepcha candidates in government jobs and higher studies ‘so that justice is available to both the communities’.
The memorandum was submitted to the Chief Minister at Middle Chongrong, Tashiding in West Sikkim by the association under the leadership of Animal Husbandry minister Dawchoo Lepcha and SLYA west district president Lha Tshering Lepcha.
Lepcha community in particular being inherently slow by nature, socially, educationally, economically and politically backward are not in a position to compete with other communities especially in the field of education and job recruitment, said the SLYA in its memorandum.
Owing to such inherent backwardness, candidates from Lepcha community cannot come in merit even in the reserved quota for BL community, resultantly, having negligible representation in government services and in higher education particularly in medical, engineering and other technical and professional services, the SLYA said.
The association has also submitted a comparative statement of officers and number of seat allotment (2005-2010) for higher studies within the BL reserved quota till date.
As per the SLYA report, there are no Lepcha secretaries and special secretaries in the Sikkim government as compared to 10 secretaries and six special secretaries from the Bhutia community. There are only five additional secretaries from the Lepcha community as compared to nineteen from the Bhutia community, it said.
Similarly, only five Lepcha students got MBBS seats as compared to 32 from Bhutia community during the allotment of seats from 2005 to 2010. There are only 28 engineering students from Lepcha community as compared with 116 from the Bhutia community, said the SLYA.
The SLYA report also gives a list of community wise strength in the State and Central cadre officials working in Sikkim government wherein Lepcha figures only 5.46 percent.
“We have in the past, in several contexts submitted that our community cannot compete with far stronger Bhutia brother community who (are) economically, educationally, politically and socially advanced than the Lepcha, and in these years, the share of job and seats for higher studies obtained by Lepcha candidates have been miniscule percentage out of the quota reserved for BL community”, said the SLYA. It also reminded the State government that it has given ‘primitive tribe’ status to the Lepcha community based on historical background like ‘low level of literacy, diminishing population, pre-agricultural technology and backwardness in every sphere’.
We are highly optimistic towards the Chief Minister and State government to supply an amicable solution on the ground reality of data provided with memorandum, the SLYA said.  

State BJP on Sikkim tour
We will ask whether real development has reached villagers: Padam

Prabin Khaling, KalimNews,GANGTOK, June 12: State BJP president Padam Chettri and his party workers today embarked on a six-month long tour of Sikkim villages to take stock of infrastructural development and implementation of Central schemes. The tour, which will be done in a phased manner, started off from the party head-office here at Gangtok and reached Jorethang before moving upwards to Soreng where a halt is scheduled.
“The Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) party is going to the villages to take stock of development after 17 long years. We are also going directly to the doors of the villagers and ask them directly whether real development has reached them. We will do our best to understand whether the villagers are getting benefits of Centrally Sponsored Schemes like BPL rice, old age pension and other basic minimum needs”, said the State BJP president to reporters today morning.
The 36 years old politician is accompanied by party workers, namely, Padam Sharma, Prabhu Ram Karka and Ram Kumar Chettri from Gangtok. They will be joined by local supporters during their tour of Sikkim.
“We know that proposals have been processed in files for amenities like drinking water supply and roads. We will go to the spots and verify that whether such schemes have been implemented or not”, said Chettri. He said that the BJP team will be focusing on those villages in South and West districts where Chief Minister Pawan Chamling have not reached during his ongoing tour.
The BJP team is carrying pamphlets explaining the objectives behind the tour along with complaint forms which will be given to the villagers. “Whatever complaints are recorded in the forms about water supply and other basic amenities, we will bunch them together and then take up them with the authorities concerned. We will also be meeting with the district administration on the complaints given to us by the villagers”, said Chettri.
After collecting sufficient complaints about Centrally Sponsored Schemes, we will forward these complaints to our party high command to take up the matter with the Union Ministries, added Chettri.
The State BJP will also be organizing a public meeting at Jorethang on June 15 which is scheduled to be attended by party in-charge Indra Sen Reddy and ‘a couple of BJP heavyweights’.< “We have already sought cooperation and security from the government during our Sikkim tour”, said Chettri.

Cops stop ride on hired cars
PRONAB MONDAL, TT, Calcutta, June 12: Police stations have begun stopping hiring private vehicles following instructions from Mamata Banerjee, the move aimed at preventing outsiders from gaining access to secret information and putting an end to “tout raj”.
At a meeting with police chiefs and district magistrates at Writers’ Buildings on May 24, the chief minister had. At least 250 hired vehicles serve at the state’s 392 police stations. Most of these private vehicles had been hired by police stations in the districts and their number was negligible in Calcutta.
According to sources, Mamata had told the police chiefs that the drivers of the hired vehicles had easy access to the police stations and often came to know about secret information. She said many of these drivers had “built an unholy nexus” with a section of policemen.
“The chief minister wants to end the tout raj at police stations,” an officer said.
The sources said the touts — mostly the drivers and their aides — took money to get people arrested for petty crimes released or dilute the cases against them.
“The chief minister said such practices were alarming. She feels these drivers are primarily responsible for giving the touts access to the police stations. She wants us to use our own vehicles, driven by policemen,” the officer said.
Another officer suggested that often the drivers of the hired vehicles informed criminals in advance about raids.
“On several occasions, after reaching a hideout in a hired vehicle, we have found that the culprits have already escaped,” he said. “Many of these drivers also take undue advantage of their closeness to policemen.”< A senior police officer said the force would have to buy cars once the hired vehicles are phased out. “Drivers will be recruited following proper procedure. These drivers will be policemen and their rank will be equivalent to that of a constable,” he said. Kuldiep Singh, the inspector-general of police (modernisation), said: “The process of withdrawing hired vehicles has started. In the first phase, we will use the funds meant for modernisation schemes to buy a few vehicles.” The sources said 400 posts of police drivers were lying vacant. The police recruitment board will seek the government’s permission to appoint drivers. “Once we get the government’s approval, we will start the recruitment process,” a source said.

Hoax caller arrested
TT, Alipurduar, June 12: One person was arrested from Dhupguri yesterday for making hoax calls to a bank and warning the staff that a bomb had been planted in the building.
Subrata Dutta had called up the bank on May 16 following which a search was launched. But no explosives were found in the building. Dutta was produced in the court of the additional chief judicial magistrate here yesterday and was remanded in police custody for six days.  

Road death
TT, Malda: One person was killed and two others were injured after two trucks collided on NH34 near Gajol on Su-nday. The injured have been admitted to the district hospital here.
Job plea TT, Jaigaon: Thirty-seven health workers from Nagrakata, Mal and Metelli blocks submitted a memorandum to chief minister Mamata Banerjee through the Nagrakata MLA on Sunday demanding regularisation of their jobs. MLA John Munda has assured the workers that he will take up the matter with Mamata.  

The Hills Are Alive… 
Ishan Joshi, SNS:…And this time around with the sound of an excellent, albeit temporary, resolution to the vexed, emotive and politically challenging Gorkhaland demand. If the Mamata Banerjee-Gorkha Jan Mukti Morcha (GJMM) deal announced earlier this week is, as is looking likely, brought to fruition sooner rather than later, it will be a step forward not only for the residents of the Darjeeling Hills and their, at least for the moment, fellow-citizens of the state of West Bengal, but may also provide a template for other statehood demands across the country.
What the Gorkhaland activists get from the deal, and one can safely ignore the “sell-out/betrayal” charges from those out of the negotiations loop, is an administrative body for Gorkhaland with a remit that allows for the making of pretty wide-ranging rules, executive and financial powers that would be far greater than the defunct Hill Council lorded over by Subhas Ghising aided and abetted by the Marxists ever enjoyed, and the possible inclusion of Gorkha-majority areas of the foothills and Dooars in the administrative ambit of the new body. The people of the plains i.e. the rest of the state, will be spared the trauma (though it is in my view largely imagined and restricted to a sliver of the population) of another “vivisection of Bengal”. What is obvious from the compromises made by both sides is that it is a governance-linked deal, which is why it’s workable.
Miss Banerjee has been extremely stateswoman-like in expending part of her accrued political capital on prioritising the resolution of the Gorkhaland issue despite it not being a vote-winner or hugely significant in terms of electoral arithmetic and that must be appreciated. Bravo, chief minister. The CPI-M is so de-legitimised at the moment that its leader Mr Biman Bose’s rather vague skepticism regarding the deal should officially be thrown into the party’s mouthpiece for printing.
Focusing on rejuvenating the tea, timber and tourism industries, and maybe even the education sector if it’s not too late, will bring revenue, employment and therefore public support for both the state government and the GJMM, whilst simultaneously improving the quality of life of those resident in the Hills. A duly sensitised law and order machinery will hopefully enforce the law of the land ~ and the rules formulated for the region ~ to ensure disruptive and destructive zero-sum games are a thing of the past.
Yet, for all the positives, I characterise the putative resolution of the Gorkhaland issue as temporary for a reason. As a longstanding proponent of smaller states including but not limited to Gorkhaland, a new states reorganisation commission has to be the goal at the national level. A credible statehood movement, and Gorkhaland is certainly one, doesn’t just die out ~ it either tends to pass into the hands of extremists or, when political-electoral pressure has resulted in a promise being extracted from the rulers-of-the-day to take it to its logical conclusion as in the case of Telangana, it is undermined by what the charitable would call statecraft and those promised a state could fairly term skullduggery as evinced by the “secret” portion of the Telangana Report this newspaper exposed recently.
Realistically, though, the current UPA-II dispensation at the Centre has shown no desire to take a leaf out of Miss Banerjee’s book of innovation. In fact, it is neither likely to take its nose out of the trough for long enough to be able to see what’s on the horizon, nor does it have any political capital left to spend. A new states reorganisation committee will therefore have to be left to the next Lok Sabha and the government it throws up, as and when that comes to pass. In the interim, two cheers for the prospect of peace and prosperity in the Hills despite Miss Banerjee’s unfortunate choice of phrase, in more ways than one, in describing the deal with the GJMM as the “final solution”.
Hilly haven
Hilly havenChitra Ramaswamy, deccanchronicle. com, Sunday, 12 June 2011: The early morning June air in Darjeeling is redolent with the fragrance of the surrounding greenery. It is indeed a welcome and refreshing change from the scorching heat and humidity. As we look out from the open window of our room, we see a dense drape of mist and fluffy white clouds thwart the efforts of the giant star above from making his grand appearance on the horizon. A knock on our door and our attention is soon drawn to the breakfast order of piping hot aloo parathas, generously layered with thick salted butter. The steaming cups of aromatic Darjeeling tea is just as inviting. Having sated our gustatory whims with scant regard to the piling calories, we embark on our trip to Kalimpong, 50 kms away, and at an elevation of 1,200m above sea level.
To savour in full measure the breathtaking beauty of bountiful nature along the route, we brave the cold and roll down the windows of our car. The green hills, the endless blue Himalayas far away, the sinuous Teesta river closely following us, rolling tea gardens and the abundant colours of blossoms of all shapes and sizes titillate our visual senses. We gulp in mouthfuls of sweet mountain air and make several halts en route to feast on locally grown succulent peaches and strawberries. As we weave our way through the steep and serpentine roads we delight in watching other holidaymakers having a blast, rafting on the apparently innocuous Teesta.
A vibrant and bustling hill town at the foothills of the majestic Shivalik ranges in the Lower Himalayas, Kalimpong was part of Sikkim in the 18th century. In the early 19th century the Bhutanese occupied the town and began to rule it. Following the Treaty of Sinchuyla in 1865, it came under the sway of the British imperialists and became a part of British India. With the opening up of tea gardens in Kalimpong, it attracted Nepalese people looking for livelihood. No wonder then, we get to see an impressive mix of people, culture and history in this little town, a veritable influence of bygone eras.
The origins of “Kalimpong” is yet debatable: while it may be so called because it means a place where tribals assemble and organise native games, its name could have been derived from a place in Bhutan. Alternately, the town may have taken its name from the abundantly growing fibrous plant, the Kaulim. Kalim meaning ‘king’s minister’ and Pong meaning ‘fort of the king’s minister’, may have given rise to Kalimpong which some hill tribes also refer to as Kalimbong, meaning ‘black spur’. No matter its etymology, Kalimpong is a mountain marvel drenched in serenity that has its share of colour and buzz.
We reach Kalimpong’s highest point, Deola Hill at a height of 5,591 ft, mist and cloud faithfully following us. Needless to say the pair play spoilsport and we barely get to see the town centre below, sandwiched between Deola and Durpin Hill at an elevation of 4,501 ft. Thanks to the mist, we miss out on a spectacular view of the Kunchenjunga which we hear can be seen from here. Descending down to the town centre, we visit temples and monasteries from the several houses of worship that it boasts, including churches.
Particularly attractive is the Mangal Dham temple, set in the midst of green lawns holding aloft a variety of flowering plants in full bloom. The interior walls of the temple are etched with colourful tales from Krishna Leela. We take a stroll along the quaint bazaar for the sheer colour it throws up in the array of products sold. We do not shop, but pick up tidbits of information from the locals who proudly proclaim that they produce almost 80 per cent of gladioli grown in India and that they also grow some of the best orchids and cacti in the country.
We skim past Hanuman Tok, Science City, a few bungalows from the colonial times and Dr Graham’s Home, an important landmark in the town. For, to Dr J.A. Graham goes the credit for having pioneered the development of Kalimpong, more importantly for his project of the St. Andrews colonial homes, popularising it amongst the Europeans. As we stop to buy soft drinks from a wayside outlet on our way to the town’s sprawling and superbly landscaped golf course, we spot a couple of youngsters enjoying a game of badminton on the street. We have a brief chit-chat with them and are amazed to learn that Saina Nehwal enjoys a divine status in the hearts and minds of people living in what I still consider to be one of India’s obscure regions.
Getting there
By air: Nearest airport is Bagdogra (80 kms), 3 hours drive.
CLIMATE: March to June 15°C -25°C. Sunny days,mild weather, flora in bloom.
LANGUAGE SPOKEN: English, Nepali, Hindi and Tibetan.
For more info log on to http://darjeeling.gov.in/kalimpong.html
The writer is a travel enthusiast.

Gorkha Janamukti Morcha in a new role?
Marcus Dam, TH,KOLKATA: The Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) leadership has called a meeting of representatives of its various units in Darjeeling on Tuesday to determine its immediate programme within the framework of the “official-level agreement” signed by it and the West Bengal government recently.
The bottom-line of its message to the GJM's rank and file is likely to be rapprochement rather and confrontation, even as the party leadership keeps alive its demand for a separate State, raising questions on Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's recent assertion that the “matter (political crisis in the hills) is settled”.
By being a part of the Board of Administrators which, as per the agreement, will oversee matters related to development till a new set-up for the region is finally put in place, the GJM, for the first time since its formation in October 2007, is set to assume an official position of authority in the Darjeeling hills. In a change of role, it will now be taking on the responsibility of local development
“The demand for Gorkhaland is always there but the immediate agenda is to ensure overall development of the region and resolve the administrative crisis gripping it”, Benoy Tamang, the GJM's assistant general secretary told The Hindu over telephone on Sunday.
“Our president and those who formed the delegation in the recent talks with the State Government will intimate representatives from the GJM's various units including those in the Terai and the Dooars of the nitty-gritty of the official-level agreement”, he said.
The GJM leadership has expressed its intent not to “pressurise” the State Government on the statehood demand and is prepared to settle for the assurance given to it of a new regional set-up which will be vested with substantially more administrative, executive and financial powers than the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council.
While awaiting the setting up of a high-power committee which is to submit its recommendations within six months on the question of inclusion of Gorkha-dominated areas in the Dooars and the Terai as its being demanded by it, the GJM leadership is keeping its political options open on how best fend off the barbs being directed at it by its opponents on the issue of statehood.
The Left Front has been quick to question its “official-level agreement” with the State Government and the new set-up prescribed in it – one that has been described by some of GJM's senior leaders as the “foundation for Gorkhaland”.
And there is the anti-GJM conglomeration of regional groupings, the Democratic Front, whose leaders wonder how true has the GJM, by signing the agreement with a State Government that is opposed to the separate State, been to its promise to the people of the hills of intensifying its statehood movement given during the campaign for the recent Assembly polls which it resoundingly won in the hills.

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