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2 Aug 2017

Tension in Kalimpong over fasting participants' health


SNS, KALIMPONG, 7 AUGUST: Tension reigned supreme in Kalimpong today after protesters were barred from entering the office of the district magistrate. Gorkhalnad supporters tried to march to the DM office where they planned to handover a memorandum on the deteriorating health of fast-unto-death participants.
"Them DM should support this democratic movement, the DM should come out," the protesters shouted in front of the DM office.
While the protesters were blocked outside, the DM too did not come out to receive the memorandum.
Enraged, the crowd started hitting the barricades and demanded the police remove the hurdles.
With little choice left, a woman finally managed to sneak through, only to be caught by a female police personnel.
"Our people are about to die; they have been abstaining from food and fluid. where is our public servant? Where is the DM?" the woman broke down.
She was later sent back to the crowd, while the police tied the cordon tightly with a rope ensuring that no one could break it again.
It all started at 9.30 a.m. when Ajit Roka and Raju Biswakaima, two of the three participants of the fast, report­edly collapsed. On the 12th day of the fast, their health took a turn for the worse, making it difficult for them to even blink their eyes and breathe with ease, medical sources said.
Meanwhile, the regular procession started from the Main Road, where support­ers of the Nari Morcha (women's wing of the GJMM) shouted about "dying and killing".
'This is a humble and legitimate request. I don't think this is a law and order situation.There is no point in using tear gas shells here. If the DM comes out and receives our memorandum, things will settle down, he is our public servant, he has to come out, or let us in," Suva Pradhan, the Kalimpong municipality chairman said.
Responding to this, the superintendent of police, Ajit Singh Yadav, said on the loud speaker "The way the crowd is behaving now, make sure you settle them down. I have no power to call the DM but I will try to convey it to him if you make peace there.
Finally, the DM, Dr Vish­wanath, appeared and said he has been requesting the fam­ily members of the fast par­ticipants to follow the doctor's advice. "Please listen to whatever the doctor is saying,' he said.
The SP also spoke to the people and said."I do not want any deaths in Kalimpong, be it from hunger or bullets. So please listen to whatever the DM sir is saying.It is the doc­tor's advice. Their condition is such that medical help is necessary. Do you want them to die? Does anyone want a case under :306"
The crowd got pacified once the DM had a word with the protesters and accepted the memorandum.

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