Kolkata: Ace footballer and Trinamool Congress candidate for Darjeeling Lok Sabha seat, Baichung Bhutia on Friday expressed hope about getting support of the Hills party Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) in the elections.
"Given the relationship I have with Bimal Gurung (GJM chief), I am hopeful that I will be able to convince him," he told reporters here after TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee met all party candidates for the coming general elections.
"Trinamool Congress alone can work for the development of the Hills," Bhutia asserted. GJM had yesterday ruled out their support in the elections saying Bhutia hails from Sikkim and not to Darjeeling, triggering a difference between the two parties after the recent bonhomie.
On the question about his origin, Bhutia said it was a point that one or two politicians would raise during the polls.
"There is no difference between Sikkim and Darjeeling. We are all same. Fifty per cent of the people in Darjeeling and Sikkim have relations among them," said Bhutia, a former India football team captain. Backed by the GJM, which is a dominant force in the Hills, BJP leader Jaswant Singh won the Darjeeling Lok Sabha seat in 2009.