Mamata agrees to probe police firings in Darjeeling hills


Stating that her government wanted peace and normalcy to return in Darjeeling, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo said the people of the hills had faced a lot of difficulties in the last few months. This, despite tripartite dialogue being the first demand in the 17-point memorandum that the Binay Tamang faction of the GJM had submitted to the government. We want tri-partite talks at political level. Tripartite meeting right now is not possible because GTA's elected members have chosen to dissolve it. "Benoy Tamang, who angered his party chief Bimal Gurung for suspending the bandh from 1 to 12 September, admitted the call had not really worked". Banerjee said on Tuesday that the state will examine how to legally initiate a tripartite discussion over Gorkhaland.

JAP issued a press release, stating that there should be a tripartite meeting... if you we are honest towards Gorkhaland, you should have raised you voice...", he added."Binay Tamang should have raised the Gorkhaland issue.

Withdrawing the indefinite strike was also discussed in the meeting.

"Today's meeting was very positive and constructive". They also demanded a high-level investigation for the police firing (during agitation).

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Mamata Banerjee also agreed to look into some other demands of the pro-Gorkhaland parties including payment of minimum wages to tea garden workers and running of hill schools during winter break to compensate for the losses during the 90-day strike. "We are indebted to the chief minister for listening to us, the process has started and hope to reach to some concrete solution after the meeting at Nabanna".

Binay Tamang also demanded compensation for the families who lost their loved ones and for the people who have been injured in the revived movement of Gorkhaland. "We have asked the state government to see that employees and workers are not politically victimised", he added. There were some good outcomes.

Tuesday's all party meeting at Uttarkanya in Siliguri was attended by the Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF), Jan Andolan Party, two members of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) - Amar Singh Rai and Santa Rai.

In his statement, Jyoti Kumar said: "The meeting was along the expected lines and has not come as a surprise. Therefore, we would appeal to the Centre to immediately convene a meeting on the issue at the earliest so that the stalemate in Darjeeling Hills can be addressed".