ON A VOTING DAY – Bimal’s challenge to Mamata continued


Darjeeling April 17: Given the intensity and vigour, its consideration of being the prestigious seat for both Bimal Gurung, the GJM supremo and Bengal Chief minister Mamata Banerjee, the voting day in the three hill subdivision of Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Kurseong went off peacefully.

Bimal Gurungs’s challenge to Mamata Banerjee
Bimal Gurungs’s challenge to Mamata Banerjee

It was though time to bid adieu to former BJP MP Jaswant Singh who had entered the hill political arena with rousing welcome but had to depart with nothing other than allegations of divulging funds somewhere else and not doing much on his part for ‘important’ hill issue vis-a-vis Gorkhaland.

As people stepped out to vote amidst tight security arrangement all over especially the polling stations, with houses in most of the hill towns planting atop the BJP flags, signifying hope for creation of Gorkhaland it was a day where towns’ remains shut throughout the day.

For Bimal Gurung who looked confident of a win while casting his vote however continued with his vitriolic attack on the Trinamool chief. “What Mamata Banerjee says does not matter. Even the chief minister of Andhra Pradesh resigned against the division of his state but still Telangana was created. It does not matter if Banerjee opposes creation of Gorkhaland. The UPA government has shown the path that a new state can be created without the consent of a mother state,” roared Gurung before casting his vote. He reiterated that he would resign from the post of GTA head post elections.

Speaking to a TV journalist, the septuagenarian leader who revolted against GNLF’s Subash Ghisingh in 2007 however added he was not fighting for his personal interest. “I am not fighting for my personal interest like the TMC candidate Bhaichung Bhutia and independent Dr. Mahendra P.Lama. I am fighting for people’s interest and aspiration,” he added.

Asked whether he enjoys the same support as in 2009, the leader shot back saying, “The results will tell you whether i have the same support or not” asserting, “We will win with a huge margin. We have voted for the future and the BJP candidate will win with more than one lakh fifty thousand votes”.

Gurung’s confidence of winning the seat comfortably incidentally comes in at a time when Darjeeling voted amidst a four cornered contest. And under given circumstances since communities like Lepchas and Tamangs have announced support for TMC and Dr. Mahendra P.Lama who is in the fray with some people supporting him it is likely hill votes will divide this time.

However, apart from his vitriolic attack Gurung categorically suggested that this election is a procedure to form a government at the centre and everyone should be thinking of bringing a government which works towards the Gorkha demand. Asked why did he not choose to talk with Mamata on the Lok sabha polls he said, “This is not an assembly election. We could have talked to her if this was an assembly election. This is a lok sabha election hence it is better we speak with the party that form the government at the centre”.

Indian Gorkhas

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