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10 Aug 2017

2 vehicles set afire in Darjeeling, woman GJM activist held

eenaduindia.com, Darjeeling (WB): Two vehicles were set ablaze by the Gorkhaland agitators in the Darjeeling hills on Wednesday amidst special security arrangements as the indefinite shutdown called by the GJM entered its 56th day. 
A woman Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) activist was arrested from Darjeeling for her alleged involvement in the violence and arson that took place in the hills in June, a senior police officer said. 
According to the police, in the morning, a truck carrying newspapers was set on fire by the agitators in Kurseong and another truck carrying food supplies was set ablaze in Kalimpong in the early hours.

With the GJM threatening to step up the agitation in view of the expiry of its "deadline" to the Centre for intervention to resolve the crisis, the police and security personnel have made special security arrangements in the hills and are keeping a tight vigil to avoid any untoward incident.

Like on Tuesday, a police contingent was seen marching towards Singhmari in Darjeeling town, where the GJM head office is located. The police contingent went up to Patlebas, a stronghold of GJM supremo Bimal Gurung. Both Singhmari and Patlebas have witnessed several incidents of violence involving the GJM activists and police in the last couple of months.

The GJM took out rallies in various parts of the hills, demanding restoration of the Internet services, which have remained banned in the hills since June 18, and an immediate withdrawal of police from Darjeeling. Besides the GJM, various other hill parties and intellectuals marched on the streets of Darjeeling with black flags and placards demanding a separate state of Gorkhaland.

In the morning, some political party activists, dressed in the traditional Nepali attire, also took out rallies and raised slogans in support of Gorkhaland. With the food supply severely hit due to the shutdown, GJM activists and NGOs were seen distributing food among the locals. Barring the medicine shops, all other shops, business establishments, schools and colleges remained closed. 

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