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Hill parties focus on Health, water, Hassle-free facilities

The Bharatiya Gorkha Prajatrantrik Morcha, Hamro Party and Gorkha Janmukti Morcha are yet to release their manifesto, but leaders started giving shape to their thrust areas

Vivek Chhetri Darjeeling Published 13.02.22, 12:34 AM
A view of Darjeeling town.

A view of Darjeeling town. File photo

Delivery of services is emerging as a key issue among hill political parties ahead of the February 27 civic polls.

The Bharatiya Gorkha Prajatrantrik Morcha, Hamro Party and Gorkha Janmukti Morcha have not released their manifesto, but their leaders have started giving shape to their thrust areas for the 32-ward Darjeeling civic area.


Ajoy Edwards, the president of Hamro Party and largely considered the party’s face for the municipality's chairperson, said they would give every citizen with a free annual health check-up.

“Many residents are not aware of their health conditions as they do not go for an annual health check-up. Regular diagnostic tests help prevent certain diseases and go on to create a healthy and wealthy society,” said Edwards.

The Hamro Party team is conducting such tests — with focus on blood pressure, sugar, lipid profile and liver function — on a trial basis for some months now, Edwards said.He alleged the finances the Darjeeling municipality wasn’t stable as it only generates revenues to the tune of Rs 6 crore against an annual expenditure of Rs 17 crore.

“We need out-of-the-box ideas to make Darjeeling municipality financially self-sufficient and we are drawing up such plans,” he said.

Hamro Party’s rival, the Anit Thapa-led Bharatiya Gorkha Prajatrantrik Morcha, is also stressing on service delivery.

“We will set up a mini-municipality in every ward,” said Amar Lama, the party’s face for municipal chairman. He explained that right now, people have to go to the civic body to get birth, death and income certificates, but with a mini-municipality all these documents would be given to citizens in their respective wards.

Bimal Gurung’s Morcha promised to reduce the one-time household water connection charge from Rs 17,500 to Rs 1,000 and probe into the ongoing water distribution scheme, if voted to power.

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