Siliguri, Sept. 26: Minister Gautam Deb said the GTA should not be subjected to the “whims of any individual”, a day before the scheduled election of a chief for the hill autonomous body.
“The GTA will not act as per the whims of any individual. We always want whole-hearted participation of all GTA members so that the body can function in its optimum capacity and expedite development process in the hills, initiated since the formation of our government in 2011,” Deb said.
Deb did not name any outfit or leader, but it was clear that he had the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and Bimal Gurung on his mind.
“Those who resorted to indefinite strikes and issued diktats need to understand that common people are opposing such moves. The demonstrators should read the writing on the wall. We expect good sense will prevail among them and they will focus on their responsibilities to take up their assigned tasks at the GTA as responsible elected representatives,” he added.
The north Bengal development minister also made a request to the state human rights commission. “We have complete respect for the judiciary and always abide by the instructions and orders made to us. We would earnestly appeal to the state human rights commission to look into incidents of human rights violation in the hills,” Deb said.
“During the one-and-a-half-month strike in the hills, basic rights of people like right to food, right to education and freedom of speech, were infringed upon,” he said.
A delegation of Morcha leaders who had gone to Calcutta reached here this morning. “We are waiting for the tripartite meeting which the Union home minister had said, would be held. After the meeting and its outcome, we would take a further decision on the Gorkhaland movement,” said Harka Bahadur Chhetri, the spokesperson of Morcha and the Kalimpong MLA.