A delegation of Gorkha Janmukti Morcha today met Union minister Kiren Rijiju and submitted a two-point memorandum demanding a separate state of Gorkhaland. The union minister of State for home affairs is here for the International Day of Yoga celebrations to be held at Paljor Stadium tomorrow. A member of the delegation, RB Bhujel, told PTI that the delegation met Rijiju with a two-point agenda. The first was the demand of the people of Darjeeling for a separate state of Gorkhaland and the second was that the Union minister immediately start the process at the central level for fulfilling the demand, once he is back in New Delhi. He said that the delegation had told the Union minister that the protests in Darjeeling Hills would continue and the situation would not be normal if these demands were not met by the Centre immediately.
He also said the delegation apprised Rijiju about the current situation in Darjeeling Hills and stressed that the Centre urgently start the process of granting a separate state status to Gorkhaland.
Union minister S S Ahluwalia today called for a “high-level” probe into the alleged police firing in Darjeeling in which three people were killed and demanded compensation from the state government for the victims’ families. The BJP MP from Darjeeling termed as “unpardonable” the firing on unarmed people who were protesting peacefully and asked if all other steps to control the agitation were used under the law before giving the firing orders. “The killing of unarmed protesters is unpardonable. There should be high-level probe into the incident. There should be action against the officials who are responsible for the deaths,” he told reporters at a press conference here.
He accused West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee of not taking cognisance of the incident and “not even expressing condolence” over the incident or help the family of the deceased. “She should behave like a chief minister of the state, not a TMC (Trinamool Congress) leader,” he said.
Security forces are patrolling the streets and an internet ban is in effect in Darjeeling, where people, mainly Gorkhas, are protesting for a separate Gorkhaland.