CPI-M seeks poll panel’s intervention in Darjeeling

April 7th, 2009 - 10:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party New Delhi, April 7 (IANS) The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) Tuesday requested the Election Commission to create an appropriate atmosphere for holding free and fair elections in three hill sub-divisions of the Darjeeling parliamentary constituency in West Bengal.
The CPI-M submitted a memorandum to the poll panel in the wake of pro-Gorkhaland activists Monday greeting the CPI-M candidate Jibesh Sarkar with black flags and “Go Back” slogans when he went to file his nomination.

The pro-Gorkhaland Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) is fighting for a separate Gorkhaland carved out of Darjeeling.

“Our activists are not being allowed to move freely in their own areas, not to speak of campaigning for the election,” said the CPI-M memorandum submitted by party leaders Sitaram Yechury and Nilotpal Basu.

“In three hill sub-divisions - Darjeeling, Kurseong and Kalimpong - which fall under Darjeeling parliamentary constituency, it is the GJM which is dominating physically with force and violence pursuing the separatist slogan of Gorkhaland. The GJM is playing havoc by not allowing other parties, particularly the CPI(M) to campaign in those hill areas,” it said.

Strongly criticising the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for joining hands with the GJM in the elections, CPI-M politburo member Sitaram Yechury asked the saffron party to reveal the deal that they have entered with the GJM on the Garkhaland.

“What is the deal they have entered?,” asked Yechury in a press conference here, adding the BJP’s state unit was opposed to division of West Bengal.

“Our consistent position is not to divide (the states to form new states),” Yechury said.

Yechury also accused the GJM of trying to provoke the CPI-M on the issue.

“They are trying to provoke us,” he said, adding the party wanted to resolve the issue legally.

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