Gorkha Janmukti Morcha condemns Assam violence
Bagdogra (W. Bengal), Aug.21 (ANI): The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) on Tuesday condemned the recent ethnic violence in Assam that has claimed at least 80 lives and displaced 400,000 others.
The secretary-general of the GJM, Roshan Giri, said: "We condemn violence in Assam and our chief, Bimal Gurung, had sent a fax letter to the Home (interior) Minister five to six days ago. We want that our people, including everyone should get proper security and the government should do the needful."
In late July, bloody clashes had taken place between local Bodo tribal families and illegal immigrants from Bangladesh settled in Bodoland areas of Assam.
The conflict between Bodo tribes and Muslims is not new. Decades of feuding over land rights and political power has often erupted into blood letting, the worst of which was in 1983, when nearly 3,000 people were massacred.
Giri also said that the Terai and Dooars areas located in the foothills of Darjeeling region should be brought under Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA), which he termed as a justified demand.
"We want Terai and Dooars should be included within Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) and our area duly gets expanded," said Giri.
The Gorkhaland movement that began in 1980s had ended with a truce between the then Gorkha leader Subhash Ghising and New Delhi, after he accepted limited autonomy in 1988 with a new Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC).
However, after two decades, the stewardship of Ghising and the DGHC earned the wrath of local residents that led to the breakaway faction to float the GJM.
At least 1,200 people died in the first Gorkhaland campaign, but protests ended a few years later after Gorkha leaders accepted limited autonomy.
Darjeeling Hills region is geo-politically and strategically important for India as it lies close to the borders of China, Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh. (ANI)
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