Darjeeling: Tight security for Mamata

Darjeeling, Sept 2 : Heavy security arrangements have been madein view of three-day visit of West Bengal Chief Minster Mamata Banerjee beginning Monday even as the Gorkha activists kicked off "gharer bitra janta" to boycott her in the Darjeeling hills.

Banerjee after landing at the Bagdogra airport Monday afternoon would head straight to Kalimpong and halt at the circuit house there in the night.

She would be felicitated by the Aboriginal Lepcha Tribal Association at local football ground on Tuesday morning and go down to Siliguri in the same day and meet
different organisations related to the development of north Bengal.

Highly placed sources said that the multi-pronged security arrangements have been in place following two bomb blasts recently and arrests of ISI accused people from Shukna army cantonment.

A blast in a Bhutan bound bus injured six people and the KLO planted cycle bomb that killed a bomb disposal squad jawan in Jalpaiguri district forced the authorities to take extra care of security arrangement for the Chief Minister's visit.

The authorities also apprehended that the Gorkha activists might prevent or wave black flags on her way to Kalimpong Monday afternoon.

Banerjee is coming at the invitation of the Lepcha community, who have been benefited after the formation of the Lepcha Development Board by her government.

Meanwhile, in response of the Gorkhaland Joint Action Committee (GJAC)'s "gharer bitor janta" (people to stay in home) which began in the morning kept the people
indoors despite the CM's appeal to Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) to withdraw its strike and join for development works for the hills.

At a meeting of the GJAC with all the schools representatives on Sunday, the former agreed in principle allowing to reopen schools and colleges in the hills. But a date will be announced by the GJAC later.

The GJAC also said that it was happy that the Lepchas have agreed to lift their dharna in Kalimpong, which started from Friday.

Meanwhile, GJM president Bimal Gurung said their fight will continue till the Centre conceded demand for Gorkhaland state.

"Bengal is playing dirty politics and we must not be scared. They are pointing guns at us but we fight them with the might of the pen," Gurung said.

"Our fight is not against Bengal our fight is against the Central government. When we signed the GTA agreement the Central government said that they don't have the mandate to give us a state so take GTA on temporary basis," Gurung said.

He said: "The GTA agreement was signed without dropping the demand of Gorkhaland. But within a year the Central government declared Telangana. So the Central government must also declare Gorkhaland with Telangana."

"I have told the GJMM's Central Committee and other frontal organisation that I will not entertain any other arrangement other than Gorkhaland. No more compromise on the Gorkhaland demand. I am here only for Gorkhaland," Gurung said.

--IBNS (Posted on 02-09-2013)

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