Gangtok: Slamming the pro-Gorkhaland
agitationists for carrying out frequent traffic disruption on
the National Highway 31A, the sole road link connecting Sikkim
with the rest of country, Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling
today urged the Centre to intervene in the matter to enable
the people of Sikkim to lead a life of dignity and respect.
A state of lawlessness was prevailing in the Darjeeling
Hills since 1986 on the issue of a separate statehood demand
with the agitationists resorting to frequent blockade of the
NH-31A that has adversely affected the economy of Sikkim and
traumatized its people who have had to live in a state of
fear, he said at the meet on internal security presided over
by the Prime Minister Man Mohan Singh at New Delhi.
The loss to the state economy has been to the tune of Rs.
1000 crores because of traffic disruptions on NH-31A since
1986, Chamling said, an official release said here today.
Something needs to be done (uninterrupted traffic on
NH-31A) urgently as the agitationists had sought to isolate
Sikkim and its people at will and even on the slightest
pretext, Chamling implored the Centre.
The Chief Minister also accused the protagonists of the
separate state for troubling Sikkim in more than one ways and
said that the supply of beer and liquor produced in the border
state was not allowed in Darjeeling Hills while the trucks
plying on the highway were forced to cough out ransom by the
Chamling further alleged that the transports and passenger
vehicles on the highway too were harassed by the volunteers of
the police personnel raised by the agitationists, he said
referring to the Gorkha Liberation Police (GLP) of the Gorkha
Janmukti Morcha (GJM).
Claiming that Sikkim faced some problems in internal
security due to the porous border with Darjeeling Hills region
as the criminals and anti-social elements moved between the
two states for carrying out criminal acts.
Stating that Sikkim and its people have had to bear untold
miseries, trauma and insecurity in their day-to-day lives due
to political issues in Darjeeling Hills, Chamling urged the
Centre to address the law and order aspect of the problem so
that Sikkim could remain immune and unaffected from political
course on the statehood issue.