GORKHA ADIVASI POLITICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Delhi call before seal on deal – Gurung off to tie up loose ends

GORKHA ADIVASI POLITICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Delhi call before seal on deal – Gurung off to tie up loose ends – and to build a bridge without the keystone ‘temporary territorial issue’ is to see the house soon come tumbling down, as Bengal and the Centre does look for political suicide just as they did for Ghising ?!!

 

The Gorkha delegates in Darjeeling on Sunday. (Suman Tamang) - now to take up cudgel for the Greater Gorkha Cause ?!!

FROM THE TELEGRAPH
BY VIVEK CHHETRI

 

Darjeeling, Oct. 31: Bimal Gurung today dashed off to Delhi following “an emergency” call from the home ministry for a meeting, purportedly to tie up all loose ends before an agreement on the interim set-up is sealed in the next political-level discussion.

The Morcha has also asked its local units in the hills to be “on alert” for the next 48 hours, hinting that some major decisions could be taken in the capital tomorrow.

The party president’s sudden decision to skip a meeting with Gorkha delegates, who have arrived here from across the country, and instead leave for Delhi with general secretary Roshan Giri and central committee member Jyoti Kumar Rai has come as a surprise to many local leaders.

The Telegraph had earlier reported that a backstage negotiation on the interim set-up was probably on and that resolution of certain contentious issues related to the set-up was not going to be limited to tripartite meetings alone. Gurung’s confidence that the agreement would be signed in the next political-level meeting itself was a hint of a backstage deal.

Under the circumstances where at least four major issues are yet to be resolved, the possibility of sealing a deal in such a short span is highly unlikely unless a back stage negotiation is on.

“We have a meeting at the ministry of home affairs tomorrow,” said Giri today while on his way to Delhi.

Binay Tamang, an assistant secretary of the Morcha, said in Darjeeling later in the day that a party delegation left for Delhi because of some political developments. “They were called by the ministry of home affairs and it was an emergency. We will organise massive rallies in Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Kurseong and the Dooars and Terai from 1pm to 4pm tomorrow. We urge our local units to remain on alert for the next 48 hours,” said Tamang, heightening the suspense over Gurung’s Delhi visit.

Although Tamang refused to elaborate, observers believe that the need for the party’s local units to remain on the alert is probably because Gurung will have to take crucial decisions in Delhi tomorrow. So far, the issues of territorial jurisdiction of the interim set-up, mode of selection of the interim council and the transfer of the tauzi department and the legislative powers of the new authority have remained unresolved.

“Efforts are on to sign the agreement on the set-up in the next political-level talks which the Union government wants to be a mere ceremonial affair with all the issues resolved beforehand,” said a well-informed source.

Gurung had earlier hinted that a joint verification committee comprising the Centre, state and the Morcha could be formed to solve the territory issue. The committee could submit its report by 2011 following which, areas dominated by the Nepali-speaking population in the Dooars would be incorporated in the new administrative arrangement.

In Darjeeling, the Morcha today formed an ad hoc national committee.

MEANWHILE FROM THE BENGAL PAGES

Gurung rushes to Delhi after call – an editorial tweak here and there to make it palatable for Bengal ?!!

FROM THE TELEGRAPH
BY VIVEK CHHETRI

Darjeeling, Oct. 31: Bimal Gurung today rushed to Delhi following “an emergency” call from the home ministry for a meeting, purportedly to tie up loose ends before the next political-level meeting on the interim set-up for the hills.

A deal on the set-up is expected to be sealed during the next meeting, scheduled to be held in November.

The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha has asked its local units in the hills to be “on alert” for the next 48 hours, hinting that some major decisions could be taken in the capital tomorrow.

The party chief’s sudden decision to skip a meeting with Gorkha delegates, who have arrived here from across the country, and instead leave for Delhi with general secretary Roshan Giri and central committee member Jyoti Kumar Rai came as a surprise to many local leaders.

The Telegraph had earlier reported that backstage negotiations on the interim set-up were probably on and that the resolution of certain contentious issues related to the set-up was not going to be limited to tripartite meetings.

Gurung’s confidence that an agreement would be reached in the next meeting also hints at a backstage deal as the possibility of sealing an agreement in such a short span despite four major unresolved issues is highly unlikely.

“We have a meeting at the ministry of home affairs tomorrow,” said Giri, before leaving for Delhi.

Binay Tamang, an assistant secretary of the Morcha, said in Darjeeling later in the day that a party delegation had left for Delhi “because of some political developments”.

“There were called by the ministry of home affairs and it was an emergency. We will organise massive rallies in Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Kurseong, the Dooars and the Terai from 1pm to 4pm tomorrow. We urge our local units to remain on alert for the next 48 hours,” Tamang said, heightening the suspense over Gurung’s Delhi visit.

Although Tamang refused to elaborate, observers believe the need for the party’s local units to remain alert was probably because Gurung could take “crucial decisions in Delhi tomorrow”.

So far, the issues of the territorial jurisdiction of the interim set-up, mode of selection of the interim body, transfer of the tauzi department that keeps land records, and the legislative powers of the new authority are yet to be resolved.

“The Centre wants the next political-level talks to be a ceremonial affair and resolve all issues before the meeting,” a source said.

Gurung had earlier hinted that a joint verification committee comprising representatives of the Centre, state and the Morcha could be formed to solve the territory issue. The committee could submit its report by 2011, (why not sign then, instead of now ?!!) following which areas dominated by the Nepali-speaking population in the Dooars could be incorporated in the new administrative arrangement.

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