Nickol: Darjeeling shut for third day

Darjeeling/Siliguri, Aug 24 (IBNS) An indefinite bandh crippled life in West Bengal’s Darjeeling hills for third straight third day on Tuesday preventing stranded tourists an exit point forcing the vehicles off the roads on National Highway connecting neighbouring Sikkim.

The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) called a shutdown in three hill-sub-divisions, namely, Darjeeling, Kurseong and Kalimpong, demanding production of Nickol Tamang, the prime suspect of Akhil Bharatiya Gorkha League (ABGL) president Madan Tamang’s murder, who escaped from the CID custody on Sunday from Pintail village in Siliguri.

The women wing of the GJM gheraoed police stations at Darjeeling and Kalimpong on Tuesday morning demanding the presence of Nickol Tamang ‘dead or alive.’ The Nari Morcha or the women wing shouted slogans ” Pharkao haamro neta,” (return of our leader).
GJM leader Binoy Tamang said on Tuesday that bandh would continue until the production of Nickol Tamang “dead or alive.” The GJM claimed that that Nickol was murdered while he was in the custody.

The bandh was intensified today after Akhil Bharatiya Gorkha League joined the shut down of the hills demanding re-arrest of Nickol Tamang, who is also a GJM’s central committee secretary.

ABGL’s general secretary Laxman Pradan claimed that all the tea estates and cinchona gardens responded to the bandh called for rearresting the fugitive, saying the “jail escape” was a ploy on the part of the West Bengal government to please the GJM.

The GJM claimed the bandh has been successful for its influence with the people and the ABGL has nothing to do.

The Siliguri police filed a case with Pradhan Nagar Police station under 224 -IPC for fleeing of Nickol from CID custody. Nickol, who was arrested on August 16 for May 21 murder case of of Madan Tamang, was on judicial remand and subsequently on CID remand upto August 30 by an order of Darjeeling’s Chief Judicial Magistrate Court.

Meanwhile, the visiting travellers in Sikkim and Darjeeling stranded and having tough time to pass through due to spiralling prices of essentials and vegetables.

Police on Monday escorted some 200 odd tourists to Siliguri from Darjeeling but the bandh supporters today completely shut the roads. The tourists in Sikkim also got stuck as the NH 31A, the line life of Sikkim, was out of bound.

Special Superintendent of CID(North) Nishad Parvez today said they were still looking for Nickol.

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