GNLF public meeting in Darjeeling after two and half years without Ghishing

Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) held a public meeting in Darjeeling after a gap of two and half years, however party president Subash Ghising did not show up in the meeting. The GNLF had held its last public meeting in April 2011 during the last Assembly Elections, where Ghising had addressed a massive crowd while campaigning for his party candidate. The meeting today had a substantial crowd and the enthusiasm was high with supporters geared up to support the TMC candidate Bhaichung Bhutia.

 GNLF meeting in progress in Darjeeling on Thursday.
GNLF meeting in progress in Darjeeling on Thursday.

All the speakers on the dais at Sumeroo Manch at the heart of the town batted for the implementation of the Sixth Schedule in their speeches and slammed the GJM. Interestingly, all the speakers chose not to touch the statehood movement topic during their speeches.

Taking his attack to Bimal Gurung’s Party, GNLF’s senior party leader Mani Gurung said, “The GJM does not even know the philosophy of a separate state. All the promise of a Gorkhaland by the GJM-BJP alliance is false and people should not get influenced by lies.” He said GJM is resorting to terror tactics to gather vote and vouched that his party, under the leadership of Ghisingh, will make sure about the safety of the people. “Unlike 2011, Ghisingh will not leave the Hills this time and people can be assured about their safety and vote for the TMC candidate in huge numbers”.

GNLF chief convener MG Subba in his speech put forth his view on the Sixth Schedule and its implementation saying the provision would provide a constitutional guarantee. “Our leader has already signed a MoU with the state and the central government in December 2005 for implementing the Sixth Schedule. The bill for the sixth schedule is not dead as is being propagated by the GNLF. We will pursue the matter with both the state and central government after the election is over,” He informed.

When asked about the reason for the Ghising’s absence, senior GNLF leader Biren Lama said, “Appa (as Ghising is fondly addressed by his supporters) has already given his blessing and that is enough for us. We will put in everything to ensure Bhaichung’s victory. Moreover, we have already started complaining activities by distributing pamphlets across the hills in support of TMC.” On supporting TMC, he said, “Supporting the TMC is our political stand. We will not share the dais with them.”

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