Main political rivals in Darjeeling hills playing same separate statehood card

Both BJP and its main political rival Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) have started reigniting the separate statehood demand in Bengal’s Darjeeling hilly region to establish their own supremacy there. Political wind in Darjeeling plays a vital role i...

BCCL
SILIGURI: Both BJP and its main political rival Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) have started reigniting the separate statehood demand in Bengal’s Darjeeling hilly region to establish their own supremacy there. Political wind in Darjeeling plays a vital role in the electorate outcome of not only three hill assembly constituencies but many others in foothills too.

Politics in Darjeeling is no more a single sided game after GJM, the absolute term dictator in all aspects of hills, had a vertical split forming two halves in 2017. One BJP loyalist and the other highly tilted towards state ruling power TMC.

“I explained to the Parliament that the people of Darjeeling hills, Terai and Dooars in foothills have a long pending political demand which erupted as the Gorkhaland statehood movement many times. But both the experiments of Government to handle that by forming semi autonomous bodies have failed to address the demand. I have requested the Government to initiate talks involving center, state and local representatives for a permanent political solution,” said BJP MP from Darjeeling Mr Raju Bista.


Without wasting any time to resonate with the same issue, top leader of TMC loyalist faction of GJM Mr. Binoy Tamang said, “Hill community supported BJP in 2009, 2014 and 2019 resulting BJP to win from Darjeeling parliamentary constituency. Every time BJP crafted dream of separate Gorkhaland statehood. But that has never materialized.”

Clear enough, both have tightened belts to play hard with the same separate Gorkhaland statehood card.

With over 70percent contribution to the populace in the hills, Gorkha Community with bold Gorkhaland sentiment in mind is the strongest decisive power. That always ensured avalanche victory for whoever could bag its support in any election. BJP is enjoying this for the last three terms in parliament despite submicroscopic presence of its own there.
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In addition, with 20 -40 percent share in populace, Gorkhas are too important in electoral politics of around 15 other assembly seats in the foothills.

Eventually, BJP and GJM (Pro TMC faction) both seem to be desperate now to blow maximum possible air to the Gorkha sentiment once again as the state goes on assembly election in 2021.
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