Darjeeling: “Bimal Gurung is eyeing the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) chair while stoking Gorkhaland sentiments. He is making a fool of the public,” stated Binay Tamang, Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) president and chairman, GTA Board of Administrators.The allegation comes in the wake of the Gurung faction of GJM declaring that they are ready to open up dialogue with the state government and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. On Thursday, Col (retd.) Ramesh Allay, a GJM leader owing allegiance to Gurung, stated while talking to media persons in Kalimpong that they had sent a letter to the state government, stating that they are ready to hold a meeting with the Chief Minister. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeGurung had spearheaded an agitation in 2017, which had culminated in a 105 day long bandh. The agitation witnessed widespread violence and the death of 11 persons. Gurung and many of his associates were charged in numerous criminal cases. They are all absconding. Since Gurung was declared an absconder, his name has been struck off the electoral rolls and his properties attached by a court order. Reacting to Allay’s statement, the Binay Tamang faction of the GJM had stated that the statement is proof enough that dialogue with the state government is the correct way out. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed”If they wanted to sit in a dialogue with the state government then why were Binay Tamang and Anit Thapa dubbed anti-Gorkha and anti-Gorkhaland when they opened up dialogue with the state government in August 2017? After one year if Gurung is looking forward to a dialogue with the state then why oppose Binay Tamang and Anit Thapa?” questioned Suraj Sharma, GJM spokesperson. Sharma stated that it clearly proves the double standards of Gurung. “While he is stoking Gorkhaland sentiments and raising the issue of the death of martyrs on one side, on the other he is opening up back door channels for dialogue with the state. All the violence, unrest, 105 day bandh and death of 11 innocents is a result of Gurung’s political short-sightedness, stubborn attitude and double standards,” retorted Sharma. He stated that Gurung has always been eyeing the GTA chair and compromised the Gorkhaland issue. “In 2011 after 3 supporters died in police firing in Sibchu, Gurung settled for the GTA. Again in 2013 when the process was initiated for the formation of Telangana, Gurung resigned from the GTA. As soon as the agitation peaked and Mangal Singh Rajput committed self-immolation, Gurung immediately returned as GTA chief. Now, after the death of 11 persons and hundreds going to jail, Gurung is again eyeing the GTA chair. For how long will he make a fool of the public?” questioned Sharma.
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