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1 Jul 2017

Indefinite Strike burns kill truck driver .. TMC says barbaric attack

Aniket’s funeral procession on Hill Cart Road in Siliguri
TT, Siliguri, June 30: A young truck driver last night succumbed to burn injuries he suffered 12 days ago when suspected Gorkha Janmukti Morcha supporters set his Sikkim-bound vehicle on fire and allegedly sprinkled fuel on him while enforcing the ongoing indefinite bandh in support of Gorkhaland.
Aniket Chhetri was ferrying bricks to the neighbouring state when his truck came under attack on June 19 at Kalijhora, around 30km from here.
He was initially admitted to North Bengal Medical College and Hospital in Siliguri but shifted on June 24 to SSKM Hospital in Calcutta. He was declared dead last night.
"We have no idea why he was attacked. It is unfortunate that despite being a resident of the hills, he was killed for no fault of his. He was just doing his duty," one of his relatives said.
NH10 connects Sikkim with the rest of the country and efforts have always been made to keep the highway open for strategic reasons. But instances of attacks and intimidation have been reported on the stretch.
Aniket's father Surya, a hotel employee in Rajasthan, and one of his relatives requested the media to leave them alone at the Siliguri crematorium.
Some of Aniket's relatives said an undercurrent of fear was running deep. "What the family has lost is irreparable. Simultaneously, they will have to stay at their home in the hills. Under the present circumstances, they cannot afford to make any comment that can pose problems for them in the coming days," a relative said.
"Some local leaders know that we have come down to Siliguri with Aniket's family during this hour of crisis. We don't know whether we will have to face any consequences. All we want is that no more youths like him should lose their lives."
"It is unfortunate that common people in the hills fear to speak freely even though a youth has lost his life in a brutal attack," said Ranjan Sarkar, the leader of the Opposition in the Siliguri Municipal Corporation who walked in the funeral procession.
Narbu G. Lama, the Morcha spokesperson, said: "It is a very sad incident, we condemn it. But we are not sure who the attackers were. It should not have happened."
The Trinamul Congress described the attack as "barbaric".
(Source & Courtesy: https://www.telegraphindia.com/1170701/jsp/frontpage/story_159624.jsp)

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