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GTA grouse to Centre

Darjeeling, June 28: The Gorkhaland Territorial Administration today resolved to send a delegation to Delhi to ask the Centre to stop the state government from “interfering” in the autonomous hill body’s functioning.

The resolution was adopted at an “emergency meeting” attended by 37 of the GTA’s 50 members. The meeting was prompted by the arrest of an elected GTA member yesterday.

Kaziman Lohagun has been accused of supplying weapons to six people who allegedly threatened a farmer for refusing to part with his land for a GTA tourism project at Jamuni, 20km from Darjeeling. Lohagun has been sent to five days’ police remand.

The farmer, Manilal Tamang, had filed a police complaint alleging he was threatened by the six people “under (Gorkha Janmukti Morcha president) Bimal Gurung’s instructions”.

The Morcha has accused the Trinamul Congress of instigating the complaint.

Bhupendra Pradhan, chairman of the GTA Sabha, said: “Our elected members are being arrested on false charges. The GTA chairman should be intimated by the police before the arrest of any of its members. But this was not done.”

The GTA Act does not lay down such a provision.

“The GTA Sabha today passed a resolution to meet the Union home minister in the first week of July and seek his intervention to end the interference by the state government,” Pradhan said.