Darjeeling violence: Amidst continuing violence in Darjeeling, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Sunday called up West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to take an account of the situation prevailing there. Speaking to ANI, Singh said, “Spoke to West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee this morning. She has apprised me of the situation prevailing in Darjeeling.” He has also urged the local residents and people living around the vicinity to remain calm. He said, “I appeal to the people living in Darjeeling and nearby areas to remain calm and peaceful. Nobody should resort to violence.”
“In democracy like India resorting to violence would never help in finding a solution. Every issue can be resolved through mutual dialogue,” the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader added further. Darjeeling has been on the boil for the past 10 days and on June 17 witnessed fierce clashes between Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) activists and the police where one civilian was killed and 35 security personnel were injured, including an India Reserve Battalion (IRB) officer seriously, said an NDTV report.
Singh had also asked the West Bangal CM to take all possible steps to ensure peace in the hill station where people are protesting against ‘imposition’ of Bengali in schools by making the language mandatory. GJM, which is in power in the semi-autonomous Gorkhaland Territorial Administration, started a a protest over the issue.
However, speaking to reporters Banerjee said yesterday, “What is happening today is a deep-rooted conspiracy. So many bombs and arms cannot be gathered in a day. I am ready to sacrifice my life, but I will not allow Bengal to be divided.”
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“There is a terrorist brain behind this hooliganism. We have got clues that they have connections with underground insurgent groups in the Northeast. There are some other countries also helping,” PTI quoted the CM saying further.
Currently, the home ministry has put on hold sending additional paramilitary personnel to Darjeeling as no report on the ground situation had come from the West Bengal government.