Govt holds political-level talks on Darjeeling

The issue of setting up a regional authority in Darjeeling for the Gorkhas and its territorial jurisdiction came up for discussion at a tripartite political- level meeting here on Saturday.

Last Updated: Jul 24, 2010, 20:48 PM IST

New Delhi: The issue of setting up a regional
authority in Darjeeling for the Gorkhas and its territorial
jurisdiction came up for discussion at a tripartite political-
level meeting here on Saturday.

Representatives of Central and West Bengal governments and
Gorkha Janmukti Morcha discussed the modalities on how to
carry forward the dialogue process on the demands of the GJM.

"The meeting was very cordial. We hope that the government
will soon come up with a concrete proposal for Darjeeling to
bring a lasting solution to the problem," GJM general
secretary Roshan Giri told reporters after the meeting.

An official level meeting will be held on August 17 where
the West Bengal government and the GJM will give their views
on the Centre`s proposal for an interim authority for
Darjeeling.

Giri said the GJM delegation conveyed at the meeting that
the situation in Darjeeling hills was peaceful as promised by
them so it was now the duty of the government to fulfil the
demands of the GJM.

Asked whether the issue of killing of rival Gorkha leader
Madan Tamang had figured in the meeting, Giri said no such
issue was discussed.

Several GJM activists were allegedly involved in the
broad-day light murder of Tamang in Darjeeling on May 21.

Sources said both the Central and the state governments
were for limiting the proposed Darjeeling Regional Authority
to just the hill sub-divisions of Darjeeling, Kurseong and
Kalimpong.

Since its inception in 2007, the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha,
has been demanding a separate Gorkhaland state, to which it
has added the demand for the Siliguri subdivision of
Darjeeling district in the plains and contiguous areas in
neighbouring Jalpaiguri district.

Today`s meeting was attended by Minister of State for Home
Ajay Maken, Union Home Secretary Gopal K Pillai besides
others.

PTI