Gorkhaland talks elude consensus

Meet positive, says GJM


There was no such agreement at all for a separate Gorkhaland state, Pillai observed emerging out of the meeting venue at Darjeeling, reports said.

However, the contending parties agreed to continue discussions to hammer out a solution to the thorny problem,vexing the hill region for nearly two decades.  The three-hour marathon meeting was attended by Pillai, a Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) delegation and state chief secretary A M Chakraborty and home secretary Ardhendu Sen.
“We had detailed discussions with the GJM and state government representatives regarding the formation of a separate Gorkhaland state and various other issues. We’ll continue to hold discussions on this to find a solution to the Gorkhaland problem,” Pillai was quoted as having said at a press conference in Darjeeling.

According to the union home secretary, the GJM representatives indicated their inclination to pursue discussions on Gorkhaland at various political levels. Both the Centre and the state government representatives, it has been agreed, would place their views to the respective authorities and would come back to the GJM within 45 days.
The 16-member GJM delegation headed by the outfit’s general secretary Roshan Giri appeared dissatisfied as there was no agreement for further division of West Bengal. The meeting, which began at 11 am, was attended by a Central government team led by Pillai and a six-member state government team headed by Chakraborty.
 Lt General Vijay Madan, the Central government-appointed interlocutor, was also present during the meeting.

  The GJM general secretary termed the meeting as “positive” and said it would relax the indefinite hunger strike in the hills till Christmas. However, the strike will resume from December 26 and continue till December 31 on the NH-31. “We’ll continue our movement democratically to achieve a separate Gorkhaland state and we’ll carry it out peacefully till our demand is met,” Giri was quoted as saying.
The Centre had in 2005 conferred the Sixth Schedule status on the Gorkha National Liberation Front-led Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council, ensuring greater autonomy. But, the GJM which has seized the reins from the Subhas Ghising-led GNLF, revived the demand for Gorkhaland.

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