GJM calls off shutdown in Darjeeling

India Blooms News Service

Darjeeling, Feb 22 (IBNS) The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) has called off its proposed Darjeeling shutdown from Wednesday in view of the examinations held under the West Bengal Secondary Board of Education.

GJM’s spokesman professor Rohit Sharma said Tuesday that the party leadership has suspended its bandh for an indefinite period to allow over 10,000 candidates to sit for the secondary examinations beginning Wednesday.

The GJM had relaxed the bandh between Feb 19-22 and was expected to announce a fresh strike call in demand of a Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) probe in the Sibchu police firing in which altogether three GJM supporters were killed.

The Bimal Gurung led GJM had been observing the Darjeeling bandh since Feb 9 to press the government for the CBI probe into the police firing. Whilst a 24-year-old woman and sixteen-year-old boy were killed at Sibchu in the Dooars, another woman succumbed to her bullet wound few days later at a Siliguri nursing home.

Prof Sharma said the party would not sponsor any bandh for now as March and April are the months of exams from secondary to under graduate level under various boards.

The GJM, however, would start hunger strike at five places from Feb 24 to press for the CBI inquiry into the police firing.

Prof Sharma said each place will have a five-member team who will sit for fast unto death.

The members will be taken from ex-army and Gorkhaland personnel, the self-styled GJM police said.

Another group would move to New Delhi to sit for a relay hunger strike from Feb 27.

Meanwhile, four companies of Indo-Tibet Border Police (ITBP) had been deployed in the hills to maintain the law and order situation, IGP, North Bengal, Ranvir Kumar said.

With the four companies of ITBP, now Darjeeling has a total eight companies of central para-military forces to assist the local administration.

The GJM had been spearheading a movement for a separate state since Oct 2007.

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