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18 Jul 2017

GJM asks govt employees not to attend office ... Clashes in Mirik

MP | 17 July 2017 | Darjeeling: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) has asked government employees not to attend office from Tuesday. If they do not pay heed to the warnings, the houses of the employees will be gheraoed.
The announcement comes on the heels of the government office gherao of the Morcha in the Hills on Monday. GJM supporters in large numbers arrived at the District Magistrate Office located at the Lebong Cart Road, Darjeeling.

"We wanted to submit a memorandum to the District Magistrate. Instead of calling us to her chamber, the District Magistrate came to the street. This is an insult to us hence we did not submit the memorandum," stated Trilok Chandra Roka, a GJM leader.
After shouting anti-state government slogans and pro--Gorkhaland slogans, the agitators returned to the Chowk Bazar where GJM leaders addressed the gathering.

Talking on the issue Joyoshi Das Gupta, District Magistrate, Darjeeling stated: "I told them clearly that I will not accept any memorandum in my chamber. As they had got thousands of supporters, I wanted to receive the memorandum in front of all. I too had a memorandum to give to the agitators but they did not accept it."
When questioned on what was the content of her memorandum, the DM stated: "I had written that for the past 33 days, the Hills have been forcefully shut. Schools and educational institutions are closed. The Hill students are suffering and are falling behind. The tea industry is in doldrums. All the Hill tea estates have been shut down. The second flush which brings in revenue and foreign exchange has been destroyed. Now, the monsoon flush is also on the verge of getting destroyed. The Hill economy is in shambles. It is the residents who are bearing the brunt of the agitation."
Later addressing GJM supporters at the Chowk Bazar in Darjeeling, Roka blamed government employees for attending office. He alleged that they are getting free rations from the government and lunch is also being provided for the staff at the DM office.
"An agitation for Gorkhaland is on. We have asked all employees not to attend office. They are still attending. Even if there are threats of losing jobs, pay cuts or getting transferred they will have to stay away from office from Tuesday. If they continue, we will take the rallies to their residences and launch gheraos. If they continue attending office, they will have to come out in the open and give declarations that they do not want Gorkhaland," stated Roka.
Meanwhile, GJM general secretary Roshan Giri and Central Committee member P T Ola are camping in Delhi. The three GJM MLAs are in Kolkata for the Presidential elections. From Kolkata, the three MLAs could visit Delhi. The GJM has been demanding immediate Central intervention in the Darjeeling impasse.
A police booth in Mirik and inspection bungalow staff quarters of the WBSEB in Bijanbari were torched allegedly by pro-Gorkhaland supporters on Monday.
Clashes broke out between supporters of TMC and GJM in Mirik following a GJM rally late in the evening. One Navraj Tamang of TMC was injured and has been admitted to a private nursing home in Siliguri. One Anand Rai of GJM is also injured. One Kailash Tamang has been arrested following which policemen were attacked. Police burst tear gas shells.

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