GJM to shut SDO and BDO offices from April 7
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Last Updated: Monday, April 05, 2010, 12:28
Siliguri: Gorkha Janamukti Morcha has announced plans to shut down all Sub-Divisional and Block Development offices in Darjeeling hills of West Bengal indefinitely from April 7 in protest against hike in water tax among other issues.

GJM chief Bimal Gurung at a party meeting in Kurseong had said yesterday that movement of vehicles from these offices would also be disrupted.

The decision was taken to protest against the hike in water tax and non-payment of dues under Nehru Rojgar Yojana scheme, press and publicity chief of the morcha Harka Bahadur Chhetri told a news agency over phone this morning.

Gurung said that the GJM wanted to settle the "territory issue" at the next political level tripartite talks scheduled in mid-May.

"The Morcha has already demanded autonomy to 124 departments. But only departments will not not serve our purpose, we want demarcated territory in the interim arrangement", he said.

A Morcha delegation was in New Delhi recently to discuss the main issues for an interim arrangement in the Darjeeling hills till 2011 when assembly elections are due in West Bengal.

Gurung had said that the interim arrangement would be as good as a separate state of Gorkhaland.

"Only the name will be different," he said adding it has been conveyed to both state and the Centre that territories for interim arrangement should have to be identified first.

Gurung said he had also submitted a revised map of the territory which had excluded some areas of Terai and Dooars region in his secret proposal.

Earlier, Harka Bahadur Chhetri had told a news agency that GJM would in no case forego the demand for inclusion of Siliguri within its territory.

State Home Secretary Ardhendu Sen, during official-level talks in Delhi last month, had said that inclusion of Siliguri or any other land barring three hill sub-divisions in the territory was 'impractical, impossible and out of question'.


First Published: Monday, April 05, 2010, 12:28

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