Gorkhaland group defers shutdown for X-Mas celebration

December 18th, 2008 - 11:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Siliguri, Dec 18 (IANS) The Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) activists Thursday deferred their proposed three-day shutdown because of the Christmas celebration in West Bengal’s Darjeeling Hills and declared that the strike would be called Dec 27-29 instead of Dec 23-25.”We’ve deferred the date for calling the three-day shutdown considering the Christmas celebration in the hills Dec 25,” Roshan Giri, the GJM general secretary, said.

The GJM, which is spearheading a movement for a separate Gorkhaland state in the Darjeeling hills, earlier threatened to call a strike if the state police did not arrest the accused people who allegedly beat up Gorkhaland supporters Dec 10 in the district.

At least 25 people, including 10 policemen, were injured following the violent clashes between rival GJM and Jana Jagaran Mancha (JJM) at Hamiltonganj in West Bengal’s Jalpaiguri district.

The clashes occurred when GJM activists, who surrounded the Block Development Office and the Gram Panchayat office at Hamiltonganj under Alipurduar sub-division, met with resistance from workers of JJM, which is opposed to the creation of a Gorkhaland state.

“We demand immediate arrest of those people who were involved in the attack on our supporters,” Giri said.

Giri said: “Protesting an attack, the GJM had already approached the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and sought an end to what it terms state-sponsored terrorism.”

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