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Attack blame on Morcha

Darjeeling, April 10: GNLF activists today alleged that Gorkha Janmukti Morcha supporters led by Bimal Gurung attacked them at Jorebungalow near here when both sides were returning from separate public meetings.

Today, the GNLF held its first public meeting in the hills after nearly three years in Chowk Bazar.

The GNLF meeting got over by 3pm and party leaders alleged that Morcha supporters returning from the BJP meeting in Siliguri attacked four vehicles carrying GNLF activists at Jorebungalow, 10km from here, around 4.30pm.

Phur Temba Bhutia, the GNLF’s chief convenor of Sukhiapokhria constituency, said: “We were returning after the meeting and there was a traffic jam. (Morcha chief) Bimal Gurung suddenly got off his car and snatched the vehicle key from our driver. The others damaged our car.”

The GNLF has filed an FIR against Gurung, P.T. Ola, a GTA Sabha member, Priyabardan Rai, a youth leader, and Chandan Yolmo, a Morcha youth leader from Jorebungalow.

Binay Tamang, assistant secretary of the Morcha, said the allegation was baseless. “This is being stage-managed by the GNLF and the TMC because they have realised that they will lose. Gurung had already reached his residence in Darjeeling and Ola, Yolmo and Rai had just started from Siliguri to go to Darjeeling when the GNLF is claiming its supporters were attacked.”

The GNLF is supporting Trinamul’s Bhaichung Bhutia from the Darjeeling Lok Sabha seat and today, the ruling party filed a general diary with Jorebungalow police after the alleged attack. Gurung’s name was not mentioned in the complaint.

Today, the GNLF demanded that the DGHC be revived to replace GTA. “Till the Sixth Schedule status is conferred, the DGHC must be revived as it was achieved after a lot of bloodshed. The Sixth Schedule status will bring unity among Gorkhas. The oppressed would become rulers. The GTA is a toothless body,” said GNLF Darjeeling branch committee convener, M.G. Subba.

Party chief Subash Ghisingh, who is in Darjeeling now, did not attend today’s meeting.