Protests in Darjeeling intensify

According to police sources, the situation is under control. Troops of Border Security Force flag-marched various places as the indefinite shutdown in the hills by the Gorkha outfit to protest the killing of three of its supporters entered its second day.

According to GJM leader Harka Bahadur Chettri, the outfit’s central committee would meet in the evening to decide the next course of action and promised a ‘democratic’ movement for the cause. He, however, remained tight-lipped over the withdrawal of the shutdown.

The West Bengal government which was smarting under a bitter rebuff by the Defence Ministry on deployment of Army in the troubled hills, directed the district administration to flag-march the paramilitary troops in the vulnerable parts of the hills as a precautionary measure. Tourists have been advised to leave the place fearing flare-ups any moment.
Maintaining that the situation in the violence-scarred areas was improving, ADG (law and order) S Karpurakayastha said two BSF companies have joined five companies of CRPF in Darjeeling to bolster security measures.

“When efforts are on to evolve a political solution to the Darjeeling issue through tripartite meetings in Delhi, the GJM has gone for violent methods which are not at all acceptable,” Buddhadev Bhattacherjee said.

Terming the police firing and the subsequent violence as a “conspiracy” of the West Bengal government, Chettri alleged: “They want to create a volatile situation so that the movement can be curbed in the name of containing law and order”.

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