Bimal Gurung accused Harka Bahadur of diluting Gorkhaland demand

Gurung barb at Harka

Writes: Vivek Chhetri

Bimal Gurung yesterday accused Harka Bahadur Chhetri of diluting the Gorkhaland demand and criticised the Kalimpong MLA for his closeness with the state government.

The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha president said in a message on Facebook that his party would accept Chhetri’s politics if he took up the statehood cause.

“I am surprised with the politics around the creation of Kalimpong district. The district has been formed for better administration and decentralisation of power and we thank the state government …. But a section of people is trying to create rifts among the hill people on the issue and we are sad over the development,” Gurung wrote in the post.

Although the district demand was raised by the Morcha in 2012, Chhetri took up the issue with the state soon after quitting Gurung’s party in September. The district was announced on December 18.

Bimal Gurung accused Harka Bahadur of diluting Gorkhaland demand
Bimal Gurung accused Harka Bahadur of diluting Gorkhaland demand

Naming Chhetri, Gurung wrote: “Gorkhaland is a dream of all Gorkhas in India, and Kalimpong has sacrificed for the cause. …. Two-three people from Kalimpong with personal interest are trying to dilute the dreams of the martyrs. Dr. Harka Bahadur Chhetri is talking about the need to be close to the state government. Will the state allow the formation of Gorkhaland?”

He added: “… Chhetri was sent to the Assembly on a Gorkha Janmukti Morcha ticket. What did he do at the Assembly for four-and-a-half years? ….. Till recently, we heard him criticising the state government but he has suddenly started speaking for the government. People have to understand …”

Referring to Chhetri’s plans to float a party, Gurung wrote: “On December 20, he announced a new year gift …We want to ask him if his gift will include the Gorkhaland demand. If he has immersed the demand in the Hooghly and surrendered his Nepali topi (headgear) at the feet of the state … then he must stop identifying himself as a Gorkha. If he raises the Gorkhaland issue, we will welcome his politics.”

Chhetri today said Gurung was raising the Gorkhaland issue now because he was scared. “His statement smacks of political illiteracy. He is the one to say that the Bengal government cannot give Gorkhaland and the fight has to be with the Centre. He is raising the Gorkhaland issues just to cover the rampant corruption and his failure in making any headway on the statehood issue,” said the MLA.

“Instead of politics of emotions there must be politics of reason. I have my own parameters and I want to do things, which I can do. He (Gurung) is afraid that I have been able to create Kalimpong district and he is resorting to an emotional issue … ,” he added.

The MLA said the one-man-party had failed to deliver at all levels. “How can one believe that a person who can’t even provide drinking water to Darjeeling can get Gorkhaland? We believe in broad-base leadership and we are working on the agenda of the party.”

Source: Telegraph

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