Mamata Banerjee silent on Influx from Nepal into Darjeeling says Dr. D P Kar

SILIGURI: She has come and she has gone. In between, she has announced new schemes, distributed grants to beneficiaries and talked to administrative officials for development.

West Bengal CM Miss Mamata Banerjee missed to address the crisis of uncontrolled influx through porous Indo-Nepal border.
West Bengal CM Miss Mamata Banerjee missed
to address the crisis of uncontrolled influx through
porous Indo-Nepal border.

But missed to address one of the most important crises those Darjeeling is facing. She is West Bengal Chief Minister Miss Mamata Banerjee who has just concluded her three days long Darjeeling visit today

The crisis is of heavy influx from Nepal into Darjeeling using Indo-Nepal Peace and Friendship Treaty as immunity that has caused Darjeeling’s population to have around 800% growth during last 50 years against nation’s average of bellow 200% growth.

The trend has taken astronomically high upward turn during last couple of years following upraise of separate statehood demand movement in Darjeeling under the banner of Gorkha Janamukti Morcha, an organization mainly supported by Nepali speaking people.

“Separate Gorkhaland movement is a demand of self governance of Indian Nepali speaking community. But, number of genuine Indian citizens among the movement activists is questionable. Why Government is reluctant in ascertaining that and hit the problem at its root cause?” asked Dr. D P Kar, President of a major social activists group Janachetana.

The organization has taken the matter to Kolkata High court under lights of Indo-Nepal treaty 1950.

According to Dr. Kar, under article VI and VII of Indo-Nepal treaty 1950, Gorkhas from Nepal get certain civic rights in India but, not Citizenship.

The Extra Ordinary Gazette notification of GOI Part 1, Section-1, Date 23rd August 1988, No. 26011/6/88-IC.I clarifies that Gorkhas, either born or resident of India for 5 years before 26.01.1950 (Commencement of Indian Constitution) only, shall be a citizens of India.

Interestingly, as per census, “Darjeeling district had nearly 775% population growth between 1951 to 2001 against 184.19% national average for the period. This proves influx of huge number of non-Indian treaty beneficiaries. But almost everyone of them was put into Indian voter list giving an unnatural growth of over 9.5 lakh voters in Darjeeling parliamentary constituency area during 1955-99,”said Dr. Kar.

As a matter of fact, at no entry point at open Indo-Nepal border, official identity of anyone coming into India is neither checked nor kept in record.

“Naturally, lion’s share of the populace asking for separate state or self reliance are not at all legally Indian citizens,” he added.

Following Janachetna’s petition, Kolkata High court took the matter into cognizance and directed authorities including state, center and election commission to respond.

But, “Even before end of the entire proceeding, Government preferred signing
Gorkhaland Territorial Administration Act, conducting GTA election or forming the GTA body as per the activists demands,” said Dr. Kar.

“Hence, along with strict measure to maintain law and order, a comprehensive program has to be taken up to solve the identity crisis of Nepali speaking people who are truly Indian Citizens,” demanded Dr. Kar.

Interestingly, though no political wing finds Janachetna as ‘illogical,’ but none has taken any supporting step so far. “The influx has formed vote bank for lefts, TMC as well as INC. So none is interested in cutting this,” said political observers.

Source: economictimes.

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