Gorkhaland activists meet West Bengal chief minister

May 23rd, 2008 - 1:35 am ICT by admin  

Kolkata, May 22 (IANS) Representatives of Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM), spearheading a movement for a separate state for the hill districts, Thursday met West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and submitted to him a map of the proposed Gorkhaland. GJM representatives Roshan Giri, Amar Lama, Deepak Pradhan and Harko Bahadur Chetri met the chief minister and Home Secretary Ashok Mohan Chakrabarti at Writers’ Buildings, the seat of the state government.

“We have given a memorandum to Bhattachajee along with a map of the proposed Gorkhaland that stretches from Darjeeling to Terai region of Jalpaiguri district, including Siliguri. Beside, we have asked for a tripartite meeting with the central and state government,” said Giri here.

“We are not demanding anything outside the constitutional framework. We will carry on with our movement but in a non-violent form,” Giri said.

Chakrabarti said: “Both the chief minister and I have requested the GJM not to divide West Bengal. We may think of allowing greater autonomy to the Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF)-led Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC).”

The GJM supporters led by its president Bimal Gurung went on a hunger-strike May 1 demanding permission to organise political rallies and meetings in Siliguri town of Darjeeling district. The fast ended May 4 after the government agreed to their terms.

The central government in 2005 announced the sixth schedule status to the GNLF-led DGHC) that ensures greater autonomy to the governing body. But Gurung’s group is demanding full statehood.

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