GORKHA ADIVASI POLITICAL DIMENSIONS: GJM withdraws indefinite strike in Darjeeling

GORKHA ADIVASI POLITICAL DIMENSIONS: GJM withdraws indefinite strike in Darjeeling – GJM ‘investigation team’ to search for Nicole and to come up with proof of CID foul play, highly implausible ?!!

GJM Secretary Roshan Giri - eye on the Tripartite Talks on the 7th and hopeful of a pliant Bengal ?!! (TT)

From The Times of India

DARJEELING, Aug 30, 2010, 02.55pm IST (PTI): The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha has withdrawn the indefinite strike called in Darjeeling hills from Monday in view of the tripartite talks with the Centre and West Bengal government on September 7.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.

Asha Gurung travels to Dooars to rope in supporters – GJM meeting in Dooars cancelled – not cancelled but postponed till the 5th ?!!

Asha Gurung - now in Dooars to activate all the Gorkha Nari Morcha there for the next meeting in Jaigaon on the 5th of September, 2010, just before the Tripartite Talks ?!! (HB Files)

From the Himalayan Beacon
By Barun Roy

Darjeeling, August 29, 2010: Asha Gurung, the wife of Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) President Bimal Gurung and president of Gorkha Janmukti Nari Morcha is touring Dooars Terai.

She is being accompanied by other leaders of the Gorkha Janmukti Nari Morcha which include Jyoti Subba, Latika Sinha and Prava Chhetri. It has been reported Gurung met residents from Dooars Terai at the Deokota Nepali High School in East Khairbari, Madarihat and informed them that the party will not accept any setup without Dooars Terai.

Asha Gurung in Dooars - gathering those serious about the inclusion of Dooars and those who want separation from Bengal ?!! (Darpan)

Meanwhile, according to unconfirmed report the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha has cancelled tomorrow’s meeting in Jaigaon.

Earlier, Beacon Online had reported of the Akhil Bharatiya Adivasi Vikas Parishad’s opposition to the meeting and their resolve to stop it at all cost. It has also been reported that there were chances of the meeting being cancelled, postponed and the venue changed. The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha President Bimal Gurung was to address his first political meeting in Dooars Terai.

A number of political analysts based in Darjeeling has questioned the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha’s decision to cancel its meeting in Dooars Terai while allowing the Communist Party of India Marxist Politburo member Sitaram Yechury to deliver Ratanlal Brahmin Memorial Lecture at Gymkhana Hall in Darjeeling today.

“Why has the GJM cancelled the meeting when the people in Dooars Terai needs to briefed in on the on going negotiations between the party and the State and Union Government. A majority of the people in the Dooars Terai are of the opinion that Dooars Terai will once again be left out on the settlement. And this all the while the party has allowed the CPIM to go ahead with the Ratanlal Brahmin Memorial Lecture in Darjeeling delivered by none other than Sitaram Yechury the staunch opposer of the formation of the state of Gorkhaland.”

Yechury for all parties at hill talks – first vehemently boycott and now desperately want in ?!!

Sita Ram Yechury at Gymkhana on Sunday - platform to call for unity in Darjeeling ?!! (Darpan)

FROM THE TELEGRAPH CORRESPONDENT

Darjeeling, Aug. 29: CPM politburo member Sitaram Yechury today said all political parties from the Darjeeling hills should be invited to the next round of talks on the interim set-up for the region and promised to raise the issue in Parliament in the next two days.

“The issue must be collectively taken forward and we would want all the political parties from the hills to be invited for the September 7 talks,” said Yechury while delivering the Ratanlal Brahmin Memorial Lecture at the Darjeeling Gymkhana Club hall.

Audience attending the program - much less than expected ?!! (Darpan)

The CPM had once lorded over the hills because of Ratanlal Brahmin. He was among the first three communist MLAs in Bengal along with Jyoti Basu and Rupnarayan Roy.

On the sidelines of the lecture, Yechury said if “procedural” problems arose in raising the issue in Parliament, he would talk to the Prime Minister. “I will separately take up the matter with the Prime Minister tomorrow itself.”

The CPM leader said he was dissatisfied at the way the Centre was handling the Darjeeling issue. “What should have been the priority (finding a permanent solution to the hill problem) has not been taken up by the government. The people must not be allowed to suffer.”

Yechury made it clear that new states would not “automatically” guarantee development. “We want maximum autonomy for the region under the framework of the state legislature. The local people must be given an opportunity to frame their own policies,” he said.

‘All political forces for dialogue’ – earlier walk out of dialogues and back stabbing all forgotten ?!!

Sitaram Yechury - now calling for inclusion in talks, to help or jeopardize it like the Tower of Babble ?!! (TOI Files)

From The Hindu Special Correspondent

KOLKATA, August 29, 2010: 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 – now that the fruits are ripening ?!!

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.

EARLIER

Sitaram Yechury to deliver Ratanlal Brahmin Memorial Lecture today in Darjeeling – anything new to say ?!!

Sitaram Yechury in front of the CPIM emblem - now soon to fade with the fast losing consensus in Bengal and the world over as a dying ideology ?!! (HB Files)

From Himalayan Beacon
By Barun Roy

Darjeeling, August 29, 2010-08-30: The CPIM Politburo member Sitaram Yechury will be delivering the Ratanlal Brahmin Memorial Lecture at Gymkhana Club in Darjeeling today.

The CPIM stalwart is known to hold anti-Gorkhaland sentiments and him being allowed to deliver the lecture in Darjeeling is not being taken lightly by political analysts both in the hills and Siliguri.

Speaking to Beacon Online, a political analyst based in Siliguri said, “The allowing of the Ratanlal Brahmin Memorial Lecture in Darjeeling points to the fact that the GJM has soften its stand towards the CPIM. Further it is interesting since GJM still disallows any other part in the hill to organise any political meeting.”

A political analyst based in Darjeeling said, “During 1980s up until the late 1990s the GNLF would not allow any political party to function let alone hold political meetings for rallies. It would however, allow CPIM leaders to visit Darjeeling Hills and hold indoor meetings. The GJM has certainly picked up from where the GNLF leaders had left suggesting that much like the GNLF who after the signing of the DGHC accord began to look at CPIM as a partner in maintaining its hegemony in Darjeeling Hills, the GJM it seems now acknowledges that it needs the CPIM to maintain its political grip in Darjeeling Hills.”

Sitaram Yechury himself has come under fire for his slated lecture in Darjeeling.

A political analysts from Kalimpong speaking to Beacon Online on phone said, “What has Sitaram to offer us? We know more about Maila Bajee then he does. So there is no point for him trying to help us know him better. The CPIM has also since its very inception opposed the very detachment of Darjeeling Hills from Bengal”.

”It is certain that he will offer autonomy and will as such endorse both the Bengal Government and the GJM’s bid to resolve the present political turmoil by working together to form an interim setup. I would like to hear him say that after the signing of the interim accord his party will work towards the formation of a Union Territory incorporating Darjeeling Hills but I am certain he will make no such promise. Autonomy will certainly once again be the key word.”

Postering against frequent strikes – do need a mature opposition in a good democracy ?!!

CPM posters in Kalimpong - a need for a mature opposition but aimed at the 'Greater Gorkha Cause' of separation from Bengal ?!! (DT)

From The Himalayan Beacon
By Barun Roy

Kalimpong, Aug 30, 2010: Communist Party of Revolutionary Marxist (CPRM) has opposed the call for frequent strikes by Gorkha Janmukti Morcha in the hills by postering to that effect here in Kalimpong.

The party has also called upon the workers to stop the indefinite strikes as this halts the progress of the society and economy at large.

The party has also condemned Gorkha Janmukti Morcha for forcing on the people indefinite strikes using the escape of Nickole Tamang as an excuse.

BRIEFS FROM THE TELEGRAPH

Baby swap charge

Malda, Aug. 29: Angry relatives of a patient demonstrated in front of the district hospital here this morning, alleging that a newborn boy had been swapped with a dead girl child.

Ruqsana Bibi, 20, a resident of Rangaipur in Harishchandrapur claimed she gave birth to a boy last night. She said the attendants had shown her the baby. But this morning they told her that her newborn, a girl, died. Irate over the incident, her relatives demonstrated on the premises alleging that the baby had been swapped. They also wanted to take Ruqsana out of the facility. Superintendent of the hospital Himadri Anri assured the protesters that he would look into the matter. The hospital authorities have said Ruqsana will have to stay at the facility for further inquiry.

Bus strike

Siliguri: The North Bengal Passengers Transport Owners’ Coordination Committee will go on an indefinite strike from Tuesday to protest the poor condition of national highways and state highways that pass through north Bengal. The decision was taken on Saturday. The members said no buses would ply in the region during the strike and it would continue until they received any concrete assurance from the administration that the roads would be restored at the earliest.

Cartridge haul

Islampur: Islampur police arrested Md Pazid, a resident of Ramganj, and recovered two live cartridges from him on Saturday night. The police said he was wanted in several criminal cases.

Bike seized

Jaigaon: Acting on a tip-off, Madarihat police arrested Satish Roy, a snatcher, from his Chekamari residence on Saturday night. A stolen motorcycle was seized from him.

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