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16 Jun 2017

GJMM calls indefinite bandh in Hills after police raids, activists clash with cops, CM admits Intelligence failure

SNS, DARJEELING / SILIGURI 15 JUNE 2017: Fresh violence erupted in Darjeeling Hills today on the to fourth day of an indefinite shut down of government offices by the Gorkha Jan Mukti Morcha (GJMM) after police raided the residence of GJMM chief Bimaal Gurung at Patlebas and party offices and seized a huge cache of arms, including bows and mows, sham weapons, explosives and cash.
Soon after the raid the area at Patleybus turned into a battle field as GJMM activists, including women members, attacked the police pelting stones front atop the hills. They went on the rampage and set fire to many establishments including police outpost at Pedong in Kalimpong and a state bus near Kurseong.
The GJMM leadership called an indefinite strike in the hills immediately after the police raid.
GTA chief Gurung reportedly fled his house through the rear door. Later, he said through an audio clip: "This is the last tight for Gorkhaland. All people should be united to fight for Gorkhaland. Mamata Banerjee does not believe in democracy and she unleashed terror with the help of the police and her party cadres. TMC cadres with the help of policemen sacked my house and my office though still I am chief executive of Gorkhaland Territorial Administration Senior police officer Mr Siddhinath Gupta, one of the members of the three-man committee to look after law and order in Darjeeling, said several police personnel were injured as GJMM attacked them with stones and petrol bombs.
Darjeeling SP Akhilesh Chaturvedi said: 'We raided the party office as the GJMM decided to go on arms struggle. We found papers of some contractors. We will verify those papers. We have recovered four to five fire arms.
We have detained two persons from the spot during raid. We have seized huge arms including bow and arrow and other sharp cutting weapons. We will verify seized explosives and to investigate the motive behind of stock piling those fire crackers.'
The GJMM general secretary Roshan Giri from Delhi, told reporters that police found traditional weapons like bow and arrow for organizing school students' archery competition."This is not a law and order problem in Darjeeling. The West Bengal government has created fresh trouble. The state government is trying to suppress the movement for Gorkhaland with the help of the police. We have called indefinite strike in the Hills from today in protest against high handedness of police," Mr Roshan Giri said.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said in Kolkata, 'We want peace in the hills. There is peace in Bengal. If anybody violates law the administration take action. Law will take its own course'.
"There was peace in the hills. A few leaders are doing goondagiri (hooliganism). But one cannot do politics with guns and bombs. We will curb their violent agitation,' she later said at a police event in Kolkata. She said 'we are ready to shed blood but will not allow peace to be disturbed in the hills.'
She added that apparently there was intelligence failure and the matter was being probed.

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