Showing posts with label GTA. Show all posts
Showing posts with label GTA. Show all posts

पर्जा-पट्टा दिलाउन 3 सदस्यीय कमिटी गठन: ४ जुलाईदेखि आवेदन स्वीकार गरिने।

7:42 AM
पर्जा-पट्टा दिलाउन 3 सदस्यीय कमिटी गठन:
४ जुलाईदेखि पर्जा-पट्टाको आवेदन स्वीकार गरिने।

दार्जीलिङ,१४ अगस्त।

सरकारी जमीनभित्र बसोबासो गर्दै आइरहेको भएतापनि हालसम्म पर्जापट्टा नभएका जीटीएक्षेत्रका वासिन्दाहरूको निम्ति निज गृह, निज भूमि प्रकल्पअन्तर्गत पर्जापट्टा दिलाउने दिशामा गोर्खा जनमुक्ति नारी मोर्चा निक्कै अघाड़ि बड़िसकेको छ। उक्त प्रकल्पमार्फत जीटीएक्षेत्रका वासिन्दाहरूलाई पर्जा-पट्टा  प्रदान गर्नको आधिकारीक तौरमा 3 सदस्यीय कमिटी गठन गरिएको छ भने आगामी 4 जूनदेखि पर्जापट्टाको निम्ति आवेदनहरू पनि स्वीकार गरिने भएको छ।

आज लालकोठीमा पश्चिम बगांल भूमि एवं भूमि सुधार विभागका शीर्षस्थ अधिकारीहरू अनि जीटीएका मुख्य सचिव सुब्रत विश्वास, जीटीए अध्यक्ष विनय तामाङलगायत गोर्खा जनमुक्ति नारी मोर्चाका प्रतिनिधिहरूमाझ एक बैठक बसिएको थियो भने सोही बैठकपछि उक्त निर्णय लिइएको नारी मोर्चा संयोजिका छिरीङ दाहालले जनाएकी छिन्।

दाहालले बताएअनुसार, गत 7 तारीखको दिन जीटीए अध्यक्ष विनय तामाङलाई नारी मोर्चाले यस प्रकल्पबारे अवगत चड़ाउँदै यस विषयमा आवश्यक पहल गर्नुको निम्ति अर्जी चड़ाएको थियो भने जीटीए अध्यक्षले तुरून्तै यसमाथि पहल शुरू गर्नुपर्ने जनाउँदै आजको बैठक आयोजन गरेको थियो। यसैकारण आज 2.30 बजी लालकोठीमा जीटीए एवं भूमि एवं भूमि सुधार विभागका अधिकारीहरूनाझ मा एउटा आधिकारीक बैठक भयो।

आजको उक्त बैठक अति नै सकरात्मक एवं फलदायक बनेको बताउँदै नारी मोर्चा संयोजिका छिरीङ दाहालले अब चाड़ै जीटीएक्षेत्रवासीहरूले आफ्नो जमीनको मालिकाना अधिकार पाउने दावी गरेकी छिन्।

हाम्रो मान्छेहरू सरकारी जमीनमा धेरै बर्षदेखि बसिरहेका छन्। तर पर्जा-पट्टा बिना उक्त जमीन मेरो हो भन्नु हाम्रो गलत धारणा हो। आफ्नो जमीनको आफै मालिक नभइञ्जेल हामी यहाँ हामी सुरक्षित बन्न सक्दैनौं।आफ्नै जग्गामा हामी भूमिहीन भएर संकटजनक स्थितिमा बाँचिरहेका थियौं। अब त्यो संकट हटिरहेको छ।5 डेसिमल सही तर हाम्रा मानिसहरूले आफ्नो पर्जा-पट्टा प्राप्त गर्नेछन्। यही वर्षभित्रमा हाम्रो मानिसहरूको पर्जा-पट्टा दिलाउन हामी प्रतिवद्ध छौं, पत्रकारहरूलाई सम्बोधन गर्दै दाहालले भनिन्।

उल्लेख्य, 2011 सालमा पश्चिम बगांल सरकारले निज भूमि निज गृह प्रकल्प शुरू गरेका थिए जसअन्तर्गत भूमिहीन मानिसहरूलाई प्रतिव्यक्ति 5 डेसिमल सरकारी जमीनको पर्जा-पट्टा प्रदान गरिने प्रावधान रहेको छ भने हालसम्म दार्जीलिङ पहाड़का कतिपय क्षेत्रहरूमा उक्त प्रकल्पको निम्ति प्रक्रिया शुरू गरिएको भएतापनि सम्पूर्ण जीटीएक्षेत्रभरि नै उक्त प्रकल्प लागु गर्नुपर्ने माग नारी मोर्चाले चर्काइरहेका छन्।

छिरीङ दाहाले बताएअनुसार, पर्जा-पट्टाको प्रक्रिया शुरू गर्नको निम्ति अब जीटीएक्षेत्रका कूल 8 वटा ब्लकमा नै 3 सदस्यीय कमिटी बनाइनेछ। उक्त तीन सदस्यीय कमिटीमा बीएलएलआरओ, बीडीओ अनि एकजना बीओए सदस्य रहनेछन्। प्रत्येक ब्लकमा आगामी 4 जूनदेखि उक्त प्रकल्पका आवेदनहरू शुरू गरिनेछ भने आधिकारीकरूमा आवेदन फारम वितरण गरिनेछ। सरकारी जमीन चाहे त्यो चियाकमान होस् या अन्य कुनै पनि सरकारी जमीनमा बसोबासो गर्ने भूमिहीनहरूले आवेदन बुझाउनसक्नेछन्। 4 जून पछि 3 साताभित्रमा सबै आवेदनहरू लिइसक्नेछ भने त्यसपछि जाँचकार्य गरेर बीएलएलआरओद्वारा जीटीए अध्यक्षलाई बुझाउनेछन्। जीटीए अध्यक्षको अनुमोदनपछि त्यसपछि जिल्ला प्रशासनले पर्जा-पट्टाको प्रक्रिया अघि बड़ाउनेछ।

आगामी 18 मईको दिन जीटीए अध्यक्षले उक्त तीन सदस्यीय कमिटीका सदस्यहरूसित बैठक बसी आवश्यक निर्देश एवं चर्चा-परिचर्चा गर्ने पनि छिरीङ दाहालले जनाएकी छिन्।

हरेक जनाले रूचि देखाएर यस प्रक्रियालाई सफल बनाउन व्यक्तिगतरूपमा पनि सहभागी बनिदिने पनि उनले सबैलाई आह्वान गरेकी छिन् भने नारी मोर्चाले पनि पूर्ण तत्परताको साथमा यस कार्यको निम्ति खट्ने पनि उनको भनाइ छ।

मिरिक नगरपालिकामा भूमिहीनहरूलाई लीज दिने प्रक्रिया चलिरहेको उल्लेख गर्दै दार्जीलिङ, खऱसाङ अनि कालेबुङ नगरपालिकाहरूले पनि चाड़ै यो प्रक्रिया शुरू गर्नुपर्ने पनि उनले माग गरिन् भने वनवासीहरूलाई पर्जा-पट्टा प्रदान गरिनुपर्ने विषयमा आजको सभामा चर्चा भएको उनको भनाइ छ। वनवासीहरूलाई पर्जा-पट्टाको मुद्दा हालमा जीटीएको पहलमा नै वन मन्त्रालयमा पुगेको र विचाराधीन अवस्थामा रहेको जीटीए अध्यक्षले बताएको दाहालले बताइन्। कानूनमुताविक वनवासीहरूलाई पट्टा दिनुको निम्ति ग्राम पञ्चायत हुन आवश्यक रहेको छ तर दागोपापकै कालमा 2005 सालदेखि  पहाड़मा पञ्चायत चुनाउ नभएको गर्दा वनवासीहरूलाई पट्टा प्रदान गर्न समस्या भइरहेको छ तथापि जीटीएको पक्षबाट सम्बन्धित क्षेत्रहरूका विधायकहरूलाई सदस्य बनाएर वनवासीहरूको पर्जा-पट्टा प्रदान गरिनुपर्ने माग जीटीएले उठाइरहेको र यही वर्षभित्रमा 168 वटै वनबस्तीहरूलाई पर्जा-पट्टा दिलाएरै छोड़्ने आजको सभामा जीटीए अध्यक्ष विनय तामाङले प्रतिवद्धता जाहेर गरेको पनि छिरीङ दाहालले बताएकी छिन्।

साभार:- प्रतिबिम्ब न्युज

Gorkhaland 2017: When Miracles Failed and Criticism Invited FIRs

8:28 AM

Writes - @oyeketa

During the 104 days of the shutdown, Darjeeling experienced what every political uprising faces - blockades, food scarcity, police brutality, unlawful arrests, media-blackout, and everything else that can make any movement fall on its knees. But, what broke the back of Gorkhaland agitation in 2017 was its dependence on the ‘miracles of Delhi’ and lack of vision of the incumbent Hills leadership. When the miracle story failed to deliver, the incumbent Hills leadership had to run for covers, lost its credibility, and were exposed for their gross mismanagement Gorkhaland administration in 10-years tenure.

Everybody believed that the GTA, with all its limitation, could have brought major changes in the region. However, the ruling party of the Hills chose to sleep through it for 10 years, before being alarmed by the end their term. The fact is that the politicians never took GTA seriously, and it was only used as an excuse to embalm the egos self-proclaimed leaders.

It was not the public who needed Miracles, it was the Leaders. The public was tired equally of a failed leadership, as it was of the Police brutality. Tragically, the frustration reached a level where the public simply didn’t care. Leaders who were till now sitting on the fence until now too timid to speak up suddenly found a reason to rejuvenate when the promised Miracles failed to arrive and they quickly jumped into the pool.

Without a strong or accountable leader on the ground, rising food scarcity, it was just about a matter of time before the public would receive with both arms whatever little they get from the State government. Today, there is a semblance of normality in Darjeeling Hills, restored through a proxy administration, special economic packages and even forceful coercion. Democracy is yet to shine. But is Darjeeling happy and smiling? I will leave that for you to answer.

Amidst the deaths, heavy police crack-down, and economic hardships, Darjeeling lost control of the Gorkhaland issue and the movement had to be outsourced to people and organizations living outside the region. Starting June 2017, the Gorkhaland movement had its own little 'Arab Spring' moment, whereby the movement which till now was confined to the Hills, spread like wildfire across the globe. It was for the first time in its history of 107-years that Nepali-speaking people of the world came together to show their solidarity and support for the movement. Right from Manipur to Mumbai, and Bangaluru to Kashmir and Kathmandu, UAE, North America, Israel, Hongkong, and Europe, people stood up for Darjeeling. All thanks to Interment and Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, and WhatsApp.

It is highly debatable whether the global outcry and Facebookization of Gorkhaland issue actually benefitted the movement. But, thanks to the mobilization, funds were collected to send food to the Hills during the shutdown and to organize legal aid for any other assistance victims. Neither the fund recipients nor the donors are talking about it, is a different matter altogether.

One section of the public is happy and satisfied to see their Social Media walls filled with Gorkhaland protests and support across the globe. Movement supporters and sympathizers were able to speak up, disagree, and even exchange ideas. At the surface, it appeared that the Gorkhaland movement has finally opened up for democratic reforms where people could share ideas and collaborate.

However, there is another section that thinks while the publicity was good, it has created further divisions and polarized groups into extremes. The Leadership vacuum in the 2017 agitation has opened grounds for different individuals and organizations to assume a leadership position. Certainly, ‘the more, the merrier’ did not bring any good. The coveted Gorkhaland leadership soon became the tug-of-war, and the actual issue gets sidelined. The problem becomes dangerous when each group begins to think of themselves as the saviour of the Gorkhaland movement, the place, and its people.

The Politics of Criticism:

Some individuals, parties, and groups spearheading the 2017 agitation grew bigger than the ‘Cause’ itself. And as is the routine, when you become big and powerful, you don’t like dissenters. Any chapter of a history book is full of such example, and Gorkhaland is no exception.

We have witnessed right from the 1980s, that Gorkhaland has very little tolerance for opposition and criticism. The forceful exodus of dissenters, political murders, and persecution are normal to us.

Legal jargons and constitutional terminologies were also a mainstay of the 2017 agitation. The level of legal consciousness is highly praiseworthy but becomes worrisome when it also becomes a tool for threatening anyone who raises a question or criticizes a move. Court notices, FIRs, threats of defamation have been used against one another by those who claim to fight for Gorkhaland.

From a condescending ‘your criticism makes us strong’ to filing FIRs, and threats of defamation became the new tool against those criticizing and demanding accountability. Legal notices, court orders, were sent for criticizing leaders, organization, or even seeking financial accountability. The only difference from the past is that it is done in a much more polite and sophisticated manner than in the past. The underlying message remains the same though – Fall in Line or you Shall be brought down.

So, the bigger question is 'what about Gorkhaland? What good did the global outcry yield for Darjeeling? Are the problems of education, economic sustenance, poverty, employment, any better now? What about the people who sent truckloads of food during the shutdown? Will they need another shutdown to be awakened again? Are we doing anything to uplift education? Is any group adopting villages and schools that was planned so much during the emergency? Is anyone volunteering to help students improve?

To be honest, I cannot sacrifice my comfortable job and life to worry about these petty things. When there is another emergency, I shall send whatever is possible and will help with likes and shares on Social media. What will you Do?

Via TheDC

GTA2 to reorganise the engineering division

7:06 AM
GTA pops decentralise pill

Vivek Chhetri (The Telegaph)

Darjeeling: The Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) has decided to decentralise some functions to ensure better governance at the hill body, which many believe was directionless in the previous regime.

Binay Tamang, chairman, board of administrators, GTA today held an administrative meeting in Kalimpong, which was attended by the board members and senior GTA officials including Subrata Biswas, principal secretary and C. Murugan, secretary of the hill body among others.

Saran Gurung, media executive, GTA,said: "The GTA has decided to reorganise  the engineering division and henceforth, there would be an engineering cell at each block which would be monitored by a centralised engineering cell."
Binay Tamang with Mamata Banerjee
Binay Tamang with Mamata Banerjee

There are eight blocks within GTA's territorial jurisdiction and so far a centralised engineering department was largely overseeing all works in the GTA area. "The engineering cell is among the most important wings of the GTA and we have decided to decentralised this cell for better governance," said Gurung.

It has also been decided that sub-assistant engineers will have to make weekly visits to various sites, assistant engineers have to visit fortnightly and executive engineers have to make field visit every month.

"The engineers will have to maintain site visit book and the progress needs to be reported to high authorities regularly. Agencies would not perform will be blacklisted and terminated with immediate effect," said Gurung.

Rs 26 crore for Darjeeling hill schools

7:08 AM

Vivek Chhetri

Darjeeling: The Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) has decided to invest around Rs 26 crore to build 56 school buildings across the Darjeeling hills.

Amar Singh Rai, Darjeeling MLA and member of the education department of the GTA's board of administrators, said: "Under the Sarva Siksha Mission, the GTA has decided to construct 20 primary school buildings and 36 upper primary school buildings. Tenders have already been floated."

Upper primary schools have classes till VIII.

Sources said that primary schools building would be built at a cost of Rs 28 lakh each while construction of a upper primary school building would cost of Rs 58 lakh.

In total, Rs 5.6 crore will be spent on building primary schools and Rs 20.88 crore for upper primary school buildings.

Rai said: "Our aim has been to give a major thrust in education in the hills. We have identified those schools which are situated in far-flung areas of the hills. The GTA is holding continuous meeting with the state government on various developmental initiatives."

" Following the meetings with the state government, it has been decided that 99 school buildings will be constructed in the hills. The 56 buildings that are being constructed is part of the first phase of work," Rai added.

The minister informed that the GTA was working in tandem with the state government to ensure that the educational standard is improved in the hills.

"We are committed to improving education in the hills and regain the past glory. We will go our best and will place our progress report before the public for them to judge," he said.

In the last couple of months, the state government and the GTA has regularised jobs of 137 ad-hoc teachers.

In January, Binay Tamang, the GTA chairman of the board of administrator, had handed approval letters to 429 secondary teachers, solving a decade long problem.

The secondary teachers had been given appointment in various hill schools in 2010 by the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council but with the approval only coming from DGHC education secretary and not the district inspector of schools, the teacher's post retirement benefits were in doubt.

However, with the DI giving its approval, after the GTA pursued the issue, the secondary teachers problem have also been solved.

Via Telegraph

500 crores for GTA

12:27 PM

Since the month of June, the Gorkhaland Agitation has damaged and destroyed many Government and private properties in the Darjeeling hills. Within this three months, many violent incidents took place like burning down of the offices, properties, conducting raids and many others.As a result, the loss of the total properties approximately is more than one thousand crores.

The Chairman of GTA Binay Tamang had demanded the allocation of fund to the State Government for the initiation of renovating works of the damaged properties and also to restart the various development works which have been in complete halt since June in the hills.

Responding to the same the Chief Minister Mamta Banerjee has allocated Rs 500 crores for the development of hills yesterday.Chief Minister has clearly said that the above fund has to be utilized in a proper way, especially keeping in mind the cleanliness of the hills.

According to their plan, the GTA has to submit the fund utilization certificate to the State government. After that, the State Government will again allocate the funds.

As per source, the GTA members are quite satisfied with 500 crores allocated by the State government for the development of the hills.

Via Darjeelinghills

Bengali optional in hills: CM Mamata Banerjee

4:48 PM

-BIRESWAR BANERJEE

Mirik, June 5: Mamata Banerjee today said Bengali would not be compulsory at schools in the Darjeeling hills and in certain areas of the Dooars and the Terai.

The chief minister's about-turn is perceived to be aimed at meeting the twin objectives of soothing the frayed nerves in the hills and retaining the advantage Trinamul had made in recent civic polls.

Despite Mamata's announcement, the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha said it would continue to hold processions across the hills till June 8 on the language issue.

Mamata made the announcement at a government programme here amidst an agitation launched by the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha on the language issue.

"Some persons here are playing politics and trying to divide people. The GTA elections are ahead and as they lack a proper issue, they are spreading rumours. We want to make it clear that Bengali will not be a compulsory language in the hills and in some parts of the Terai and the Dooars," Mamata said.

After the state government had made public its plan to make learning of Bengali compulsory at schools, Mamata and education minister Partha Chatterjee said the decision would be applicable to the hills as well.

However, the chief minister made a U-turn in Mirik today and said Bengali would be the fourth language in the hills.

"If Bengalis can read Nepali, then why can't Gorkhas read Bengali? We want to keep Bengali as an optional language as students in the hills need to know Bengali. In due course, when they will move out to other parts of the state for jobs, this learning will help them. It will be an optional language here," she said.

The change in the decision, observers said, was necessary to ensure that the hills did not shun Trinamul that had just won Mirik municipality and some seats in three other hill civic bodies.

"The decision had led to protests in the hills and the Morcha that was a bit upset after losing Mirik to Trinamul got a pertinent issue to revive its support base. After today's announcement, the situation has again become favourable for Trinamul," an observer said.

Mamata also said the state government would audit the spending of funds by the GTA that is administered by the Morcha.

(Via:Telegraph )

WILL NOT SPARE GTA IF GOVERNMENT’S MONEY FOUND MISUSED - MAMATA

9:42 AM

Kolkata, June 5 (IANS) Coming down heavily on the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration – the development body in the north West Bengal hills, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday announced a special audit to check how it has utilised the government aids and a punishment ifany discrepancies are found.

“I have decided to run a special audit on the money that GTA received from the government. If GTA has stolen money, I will not spare them. This is common man’s money,” Banerjee said at a public meeting in Darjeeling district’s Mirik.

“I have instructed the Finance Department to run a special audit on how the money has been used. If they have done a good job, we will reward them. But if we find some discrepancy, we will not spare even the secretary of the GTA,” she said.

The Trinamool Congress supremo also attacked the semi-autonomous administrative body on the issue of the state government’s new three language policy.

Claiming that she has never said Bengali would be compulsory in the hills, Banerjee alleged that GTA is spreading “such lies” to create a divide between Bengalis and Nepalis of the region, as they do not have any other political issues.

“I have never said that Bengali would be compulsory in the hills. This is 100 percent lie. I haven’t seen such a liar in my life who always resort to the politics of lies. (Gorkha National Liberation Front chief Subash) Ghising was not like this,” Banerjee said in a veiled reference to Gorkha Janmukti Morcha chief Bimal Gurung.

The Ghising-led GNLF was in the forefront of the movement for a separate Gorkhaland since the 1980s, but lost its dominance to the GJM in 2008.

On July 18, 2011, a tripartite agreement was signed between the GJM, and the state and central governments for setting up a new autonomous, elected GTA, a hill council armed with more powers than its predecessor, the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC) formed in the late 1980s.

The GJM won the first GTA elections held in 2012, and is running the board since then.

“The GTA election is approaching and they have no other issues. That is why they are resorting to this sort of politics. They are trying to divide the Bengalis and Nepalis here,” she claimed.

Pointing out that the state government has never objected to the students of the hills learning Nepali, Banerjee said it is important to know a little bit of Bengali to get job elsewhere in the state.

“We have never asked the students of the hills to stop learning Nepali, Hindi or English. It is always better to know as many languages as possible. But if we do not keep Bengali as an option, how would you people come to the other places in Bengal and work there?” she asked.

“In a Nepali-speaking region, knowing Nepali is important but in Bengal, knowing a little bit of Bengali is also important,” she added.

[Via: IANS]

Why has the demand for Gorkhaland returned to Darjeeling?

9:52 AM
Why has the demand for Gorkhaland returned to Darjeeling?

Written by Aniruddha Ghosal

The demand for a seperate Gorkha state is an issue that since its first origins in the 1970s has dictated politics in the hills.

September 28, 2016  In 2009, Mamata Banerjee’s proximity to Bimal Gurung was a cause of great concern for the Left. At the time, Gurung-led GJM had perfected the bandh-boycott movement in their Gorkhaland movement – indefinite shutdowns, boycotting government taxes, telephone, electricity bills, blocking national highways to paralysing panchayats. As a 12-hour bandh returns to Darjeeling, it is apparent that while a lot has changed since 2009 – some things haven’t.

Prime among them is the sheer fervor of the Gorkhaland demand – a fervor that Bimal Gurung, now on the back foot hopes will provide him enough ammo to combat friend-turned-foe Mamata Banerjee as she continues her tactic of dividing the hills, combining development with the creation of different boards. Meanwhile, Darjeeling waits, anxiously.
demand for Gorkhaland
Demand for Gorkhaland a file Photo

Bimal Gurung and Gorkhaland, today
On the face of it, the 2016 Assembly elections were a victory for Bimal Gurung. But the party’s performance – particularly in Kalimpong, which had historically been Gurung’s political backyard – have left the party worried. Even more worrying is the string of senior party leaders fleeing ship and joining the Trinamool Congress, including GTA chairman Pradeep Pradhan, joining the TMC. Unsurprisingly Gurung relaunched the Gorkhaland demand, while simultaneously filing a plea in the Supreme Court challenging the West Bengal government’s refusal to transfer administrative power and various subjects to the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration, in spite of a tripartite agreement that was reached within the state and union governments in 2011.

Gurung’s dominance of politics in Darjeeling began in 2007, with him emerging as the voice for the demand for a seperate Gorkha state, the issue that since its first origins in the 1970s has dictated politics in the hills. The movement had seen its most violent phase between 1986-88 when Subhash Ghishing’s Gorkha National Liberation Front lead the movement, until his lieutenant Gurung began his own party with the GJM in 2007. Journalist and long time observer Romit Bagchi, in his book, “Gorkhaland: Crisis of Statehood” points out that the “singular quality” that allowed Gurung to replace Ghising’s leadership was “his invincible loyalty to the paramount cause of the community” – the demand for statehood. Writing in 2009, Bagchi predicts that “people would not accept a mellowed Bimal Gurung who speaks the voice of reason and restraint”.

His opposition believes that Gurung’s popularity has been waning, with many believing that he fell into the very trap of “reason and restraint” while joining hands with the Trinamool. Now, Gurung knows that he’s cornered by Trinamool Congress – who has begun a tactic of ‘divide and rule’ – that has left him virtually alone. His decision to relaunch the Gorkhaland protest – with bandhs and boycoots – is not just a case of ensuring political relevance, but also a return to the form of politics that he is most familiar with.

Mamata Banerjee’s tactics
Meanwhile Mamata Banerjee’s politics, of divide-and-rule combined with the unwavering rhetoric of development (which the opposition alleges is just that, rhetoric) has allowed her to make inroads into the hills. On October 2009, Mamata Banerjee – the then rail minister – flagged off the long awaited New Jalpaiguri-Digha Weekly Express and said that the railway link between Darjeeling hills and the sea would usher in a “new era” with “enormous possibilities” and “fresh employment opportunities”. In the past six years, none of this has changed. In her last speech in Kalimpong, Banerjee announced the government’s decision to accord Kalimpong seperate district status, a longstanding demand of the area while once again launching into a speech laden with the rhetoric of development. A slew of new announcements and projects, along with the customary call for “peace” – Banerjee’s politics seems unchanged.

But in the run up to the 2016 elections, Banerjee started announcing the creation of development boards for different communities living in Darjeeling – the Lepcha Development Board and the Tamang Development Board. This apart from the GTA which is responsible for governing the whole of Darjeeling district. While the Gorkhas remain the dominant community here, the Lepchas, Limpus, Tamangs, Bhutias, Rais, Dukpas, Sherpas, and Tibetans also form a sizeable population. In the speech at Kalimpong, Banerjee announced, “More boards will be announced”

Via indianexpress

 
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