Enos Das Pradhan
Oct. 23: The Bharatiya Gorkha Parisangh today exited from the Gorkhaland Joint Action Committee as it felt the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha had betrayed the statehood cause by staying in the GTA.
The Parisangh’s exit from the committee, which had spearheaded the hill agitation, was announced a day after the Morcha, the main party in the hills, started work in the GTA after over two months of agitation. All the 45 elected members of the GTA Sabha are from the Morcha.
That the Parisangh would be miffed by the Morcha’s move was clear as its national president Enos Das Pradhan had said on October 18 that “differences have surfaced” among the constituents.
“Within two months of the formation of the action committee, Morcha has betrayed the people by agreeing to run the GTA. This is the second instance of the Morcha’s betrayal. The first was when it signed the GTA agreement on July 18, 2011. Since the Morcha has shown its true colours, the Parisangh will no longer be part of the Morcha-sponsored joint action committee,” said Pradhan, who was the advisor to and spokesperson for the committee.
With the departure of the Parisangh, which is an apolitical outfit, the committee now has five constituents —the Morcha, CPRM, BJP, Congress (hills) and the apolitical Gorkhaland Task Force.
The committee was created after the Morcha had agreed in principle to reject the GTA. The Morcha was subsequently given six months by the other constituents to pull out of the set-up but did not.
The Morcha-run GTA had yesterday assigned the powers of the chief executive to the deputy, Ramesh Allay, in what was seen to be a signal to the Mamata Banerjee government that the party was serious about leading the hill set-up.
On October 18, Pradhan had accused the Morcha of taking “unilateral decisions”. “Differences have definitely surfaced. In the past, too, the Morcha has taken unilateral decisions like continuing with the indefinite closure, despite being in the committee,” Pradhan had said then.
The Parisangh president said today his organisation would carry out a campaign across the country to form a national joint action committee for Gorkhaland.
“We agreed to come together for the cause of Gorkhaland as we believe a separate state is the only solution to the over 100-year-old demand of the Gorkhas spread across the country. Ours is an organisation with an all-India presence and we will leverage that to form the National Joint Action Committee for Gorkhaland with parties drawn from different parts of the country,” he said.
Asked about what impact the Parishangh’s exit would have on the committee, Morcha secretary Roshan Giri only said: “Let’s see what will happen.”
Leaders of the CPRM, a major force to be reckoned with in the hills after the Morcha, couldn’t be reached for their comments.