Kalimpong, Oct. 31: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) today held its first public rally in the subdivision at the Motor Stand here.
However, a large chunk of the nearly 15,000 supporters apparently came from outside the subdivision. They arrived in no less than 700 vehicles from various parts of Darjeeling, Kurseong and the plains. The supporters of the new outfit were seen all over the town well before 11am, when the meeting began.
During the meet, GJM president Bimal Gurung went hammer and tongs at the local GNLF leadership, especially targeting its Kalimpong unit president Dawa Pakhrin. He also hailed murdered strongman and one-time associate of Subash Ghisingh, C.K. Pradhan, as a martyr and sought a CBI inquiry into the murder.
Gurung also expressed support for another former GNLF leader, Chhatrey Subba, who has been incarcerated in a Jalpaiguri jail on charges of masterminding an attack on Ghisingh near Kurseong on February 10, 2001.
“We will work towards securing the release of Chhatrey Subba,” said Gurung.
Both Pradhan, who was killed on October 3, 2002 some time after he fell out with Ghisingh, and Subba were torchbearers of the Gorkhaland agitation in Kalimpong and Gurung’s statement is in keeping with the rebel outfit’s pro-Gorkhaland stand.
The GJM president also announced that his party would gherao the Lal Kothi, the DGHC headquarters in Darjeeling, for 15 days beginning November 7.
“After that I will come to Kalimpong and spend about a month here touring the hinterland,” Gurung said.