Showing posts with label Kalimpong. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kalimpong. Show all posts

Time for Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and the BJP to deliver Gorkhaland - JAP

9:45 AM
Kalimpong, July 6: The youth wing of the Jan Andolan Party today said time had come for both the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and the BJP to deliver Gorkhaland to the people of the hills with Darjeeling MP S.S. Ahluwalia joining the Union cabinet.

Amir Basnet, the secretary of the Jan Yuva Ekai, said the Morcha had helped the BJP win the Darjeeling Lok Sabha seat both in 2009 and 2014 on the promise of getting a separate state for the Gorkhas.
Jan Andolan Party
Jan Andolan Party


Via Telegraph

12 year old boy and 2 people died in an accident in Kalimpong

9:30 PM
Kalimpong, June 27: Three people including a 12-year-old boy died on the spot in a tragic accident in Mul Pala about 25 km from Kalimpong and a person was seriously injured on Sunday night around 10 p.m when a Maruti Omni skidded off the road. The report said the four occupants, including the driver, was returning to Sindebung village from Kafer. Later it was known that they hade gone to Kafer for a Sunday outing.

"It was apparently very foggy and visibility was poor. As soon as we heard about the incident, our team went to the spot and recovered three bodies and rescued the injured person with the help of local people," said a police source. Locals said that the area was covered with dense fog and was drizzling too, which might have caused the accident.

The deceased have been identified as John Tshering Lepcha (56), postmaster of Sindebong post office; his relative Tsheten tamang (12) who was studying in class 6 in chandramaya high school pudung and Sanjay Mukhia (46), resident of Upper Khadalay. The driver Sanjay Tamang sustained multiple serious injuries and was rushed to a hospital.
12 year old boy and 2 people died in an accident in Kalimpong
12 year old boy and 2 people died in an accident in Kalimpong - photo Kalim news
Kalimpong Police, on receiving information of the accident, reached the spot around 12 after which the bodies were recovered with the help of local people.

The bodies were brought to the subdivisional hospital last night and handed over to the relatives of the deceased after post-mortem today.







विधायिका सरिता राईले पहाड़को प्राथमिक शिक्षा, कृषि विश्वविद्यालय, केन्द्रिय विश्वविद्यालयको निर्माण गरिनुपर्ने विषयमा जोड़ दिइन्

10:13 AM
विधायिका सरिता राईले दार्जीलिङ पहाड़को प्राथमिक शिक्षा व्यवस्थाको सुढृढ़ीकरण, कालेबुङको उत्तर बंग कृषि विश्वविद्यालयको पुनर्सञ्चालन, केन्द्रिय विश्वविद्यालय निर्माण गरिनुपर्ने विषयमा जोड़ दिइन्।

विधानसभामा आफ्नो सम्बोधनको क्रममा कालेबुङ विधानसभा समष्टिक्षेत्रका विधायिका सरिता राईले दार्जीलिङ पहाड़को प्राथमिक शिक्षा व्यवस्थाको सुढृढ़ीकरण, कालेबुङको उत्तर बंग कृषि विश्वविद्यालयको पुनर्सञ्चालन एवं अनि सबै वर्गका कर्मचारीहरूको समान सहुलियत अनि अवसर प्रदान गरिनुपर्ने विषयमा जोड़ दिइन्।
गत 17 जूनको दिन राज्यपाल केशरीनाथ त्रिपाठीले समग्र राज्यवासीहरूको पक्षमा राज्यवासीहरूलाई समान विकासतिर अग्रसर गरिनुपर्ने, उत्तर बंगालक्षेत्रका चियाकमान अनि चियाश्रमिकहरूको उत्थान गरिनुपर्ने तथा राज्यमा सर्वाङ्गीन शिक्षा विकास गरिनुपर्ने विषयहरूमाथि आफ्नो वक्तव्य पेश गरेका थिए भने उक्त प्रस्तावहरूमाथि प्रतिक्रिया व्यक्त गर्नको निम्ति विधायिका राईलाई आज 5 मिनटको समय दिइएको थियो। सोही अवधिमा उनले राज्यपालको उक्त वक्तव्यको स्वागत अनि समर्थन गर्दै दार्जीलिङ पहाड़का उक्त तीनवटा महत्वपूर्ण मुद्दाहरूमा विधानसभामा प्रस्तुत गरेकी हुन्।

कालेबुङका विधायिकाले मुख्यरूपमा अव्यवस्थित अनि अचल प्रायः अवस्थामा रहिआएका कालेबुङका उत्तर बंग कृषि विश्वविद्यालयलाई व्यवस्थितरूपमा सञ्चालन गरिनुपर्ने विषयमा जोड़ दिइन्। उक्त विश्वविद्यालयको 30 ऐकर जमीन हालसमाम पनि सुरक्षित रहेको उल्लेख गर्दै विधायिका राईले भनिन्- कालेबुङ दार्जीलिङ पहाड़को सबैभन्दा ठूलो महकुमा हो अनि यस महकुमाभित्र 60 प्रतिशतभन्दा अधिक मानिसहरू कृषिमाथि नै निर्भर रहेका छन्। यसैले सोचनीय अवस्थामा रहेको कालेबुङको कृषि विश्वविद्यालयलाई व्यवस्थित बनाई सुचारूरूपमा सञ्चालन गरिएको खण्डमा यसक्षेत्रका कृषिसित सम्बन्धित उक्त मानिसहरूलाई धेरै सहयोग प्राप्त हुनेछन्। यस क्षेत्रका विद्यार्थी अनि किसानहरूलाई कृषिको क्षेत्रमा नयाँ तकनीक अनि कौशलहरू सिक्ने अवसर प्राप्त हुनेछ। यसैले राज्य सरकारले यस विषयलाई गम्भीरतापूर्वक लिइदिने म उक्त क्षेत्रको विधायिकाको नाताले अपील गर्दछु। यसरी कालेबुङका उत्तर बंग कृषि विश्वविद्यालयको समस्यामाथि बोल्दा आज राज्यका कृषि मन्त्री पुर्नेन्दु बोस पनि विधानसभामा नै रहेका थिए भने विधायिकाले कृषि मन्त्रीलाई पनि यस विषयमा ध्यान दिने अपील गरिन्।
सरिता राई
सरिता राई
यसबाहेक विधायिका राईले दार्जीलिङ पहाड़को प्राथमिक शिक्षा व्यवस्थामाथि पनि चिन्ता व्यक्त गर्दै राज्य सरकारले यस दिशामा पनि पहल गर्न आवश्यक रहेको आफ्नो सम्बोधनको क्रममा विचार व्यक्त गरिन्। मुख्यरूपले दार्जीलिङ पहाड़का प्राथमिक पाठशालाहरूमा लामो समयदेखि शिक्षक नियुक्ति नभएको कारणले गम्भीर समस्या उत्पन्न भइरहेको उल्लेख गर्दै उनले भनिन्- दार्जीलिङ पहाड़को प्राथमिक पाठशालाहरूमा धेरै लामो समयदेखि शिक्षक नियुक्ति गरिएको छैन। अधिकाशं विद्यालयहरूमा सबै शिक्षकहरू अवकाश ग्रहण गरिसकेका छन् भने धेरैवटा पाठशालाहरू प्रधान अध्यापकबिनै अनि केवल स्वयंसेवी अनि अस्थायी अनि पारा शिक्षकहरूको भरमा सञ्चालन भइरहेको छ। यसले गर्दा धेरै पाठशालाहरूमा ताला लाग्ने अवस्था रहिआएको छ भने बाँकी अन्य पाठशालाहरूमा पनि शिक्षा व्यवस्था डावाँडोल अवस्थामा रहिआएको छ। यसैले पहाड़को प्राथमिक शिक्षाको विकास अनि व्यवस्थापन गर्नुको निम्ति सरकारले शिक्षक नियुक्तिको साथसाथै विभिन्न समस्याहरूको निराकरणमाथि ध्यान दिन राज्य सरकारप्रति म अपील गर्दछु। विधायिका राईले सम्बोधनको क्रममा विधानसभामै उपस्थित रहेका शिक्षामन्त्री पार्थ च्याटर्जीलाई पनि यस विषयमा पहल गरिदिने अपील गरिन्।

हिजो दार्जीलिङ विधानसभाका विधायक अमरसिहँ राईले विधानसभामा उठान गरेको सी अनि डी वर्गका कर्मचारीहरूसितै ए अनि बी वर्गका कर्मचारीहरूको पनि वेतन वृद्धि गरिनुपर्ने वक्तव्यलाई पनि समर्थन जनाइन्।
यस विषयमा जोड़ दिँदै उनले भनिन्- सी अनि डी वर्गका कर्मचारीहरूको मात्रै वेतन वृद्धि गरिएपछि दार्जीलिङ पहाड़मा पनि ए अनि बी वर्गका कर्मचारीहरू असन्तुष्ट भएर धरना अनि आन्दोलन गरिरहेका छन्। यसले गर्दा जीटीएलाई प्रशासनिक कार्यहरूमा पनि धेरै बाधा भइरहेको छ। ए अनि बी वर्गका कर्मचारीहरूमा अभियन्ता, शिक्षकलगायत अन्य महत्वपूर्ण ओहोदाका कर्मचारीहरू पर्न जान्छन्। तथापि उनीहरूको वेतन वृद्धि नभई सी अनि डी को मात्रै वृद्धि भएकोले गर्दा तनाखाको हिसाबमा उनीहरू सी अनि डी कर्मचारीहरूभन्दा पछाड़िएका छन्। यसैले उनीहरू आन्दोलनमा उत्रिएका छन्। यस गम्भीर समस्यामाथि विचार गरी राज्य सरकारले यथाशीघ्र समाधानसूत्र निकाल्न आवश्यक रहेको छ।

यसबाहेक कालेबुङका विधायिकाले जीटीएको सम्झौतामा पनि उल्लेख रहेको केन्द्रिय विश्वविद्यालय निर्माणको निम्ति पनि राज्य सरकारले आफ्नो तर्फबाट आवश्यक सहयोगहरू जीटीएलाई पुराइदिने पनि अपील गरिन्।


Gurung announced Rs 50 crore to upgrade Kalimpong Mela Ground into stadium

9:56 AM
Writes Rajeev Ravidas

Kalimpong, June 21: GTA chief executive Bimal Gurung today announced that he had sanctioned Rs 50 crore for the upgrade of the Mela Ground here to a modern stadium, but the project cannot be executed until and unless the land, which is with the Darjeeling Improvement (DI) Fund, is given to the hill body.

Sources at the GTA said the estimated cost of the project that envisaged the construction of both indoor and outdoor facilities, along with proper seating arrangements, was Rs 105 crore.

Addressing the International Yoga Day event at the soggy Mela Ground, Gurung said the project would be a gift to the people of Kalimpong, especially the children and youngsters. "Mela Ground is at the centre of the town. But its condition is like that of a paddy field. I have been trying to build a big stadium at the ground for a long time as a gift to Kalimpong. Just yesterday, I sanctioned Rs 50 crore to build a big stadium at the Mela Ground," he said.
Gurung announced Rs 50 crore to upgrade Mela Ground into stadium
50 crore for the upgrade of the Mela Ground here to a modern stadium
The Mela Ground with a measurement of 110ft X 62ft hosts football matches once in a while and it has cemented galleries which are partially covered. The galleries can at most accommodate 5,000 spectators. Political parties and organisations hold meetings and other events at the ground.

Although the GTA chief executive did not reveal the details of the stadium, sources said a Delhi-based firm had already prepared a detailed project report and the stadium, which would have both indoor and outdoor facilities, was estimated to cost Rs 105 crore. "To begin with, a start-up fund of Rs 20 crore from the Centre's special package has been set aside for the project. According to the chief executive's instruction, an e-tender will be called at the earliest," said a source.

The bulk of the remaining funds for the project, the source said, would be sought from the Union sports ministry by taking the state government into confidence.

However, according to another source, before the GTA can execute the project, the hill body must get possession of the Mela Ground land, which belongs to the Darjeeling Improvement (DI) Fund that continues to remain under the state government despite being a transferred subject as per the GTA Act. "According to the GTA Act, the DI Fund plots should have been transferred to the hill body. However, we are still to get the possession of these lands. Until that happens, the GTA cannot execute the project. The GTA has already written to the state government, seeking the transfer of all DI Fund plots to the hill body," said the source.

Telegraph


Kalimpong, a centre of convergence: trade, town and people

1:06 AM

Writes: Diki Sherpa
[It was said that ,someday in 1940’s A wealthy man , to be specific the director of Rolex watches desired to know this place called “kalimpong” from where such an unusual high amount of Rolex watches is demanded. When the man finally arrived in Kalimpong he was rather stunned to find out the fact that kalimpong was no more than just a small chaotic trade village in the eastern Himalayas.]

In this article I had attempted to explore the distant past of kalimpong, when it was thriving under caravan trade across the Indo-Tibetan border. In this process it not only became a centre for economic enterprise but also emerged as an important converging point of people, ideas and legacies transcending their territories to produce kalimpong as a dynamic urban locale in the early twentieth century.

It all began in 1904, after the so called colonel Younghusband’s expedition to Lhasa. At this point, commerce across the Himalayas was just a mere political expression to safeguard the imperial interest. To facilitate the commerce in the region Jelepla was preferred as a principle route linking the British Empire directly with Lhasa, as the treacherous topography of Nathula did not allow the smooth mobility. Kalimpong located right in the middle of Indo-Tibetan trade route, was a point of transit- trade, replacing Kathmandu as an entrepot for the long distance trade. The goods were received in this entrepot until they were re-exported, primarily to breakdown the burden of long distance trade by single agency. Charles Bell, the British representative in Tibet notes that – “The most important of all the trade routes between India and Tibet takes off from the kalimpong in the dist. Of Darjeeling crossing south eastern Sikkim and enters the Chumbi valley by the Jelepla.” Places such as this witnessed the colossal political and economic changes over the period of time and also primarily owed their importance or rather existence to the caravan trade across the border. Trading practice and the growth of town is “incremental” and “symbiotic”, this processes cannot be seen in isolation. Kalimpong which acted as an entrepot for the Indo- Tibetan trade in the first half of the 20th century was one of such town, where trade was the very raison d’être for its growth. Commodities like woolen and cotton piece goods ,iron ,steel ,brass and copper sheets and wares, stationary ,sugar , gur, dried fruits ,dyes ,chemical ,kerosene ,candles ,lantern ,electronic torches and batteries ,brick tea , aluminum ware , porcelain ,cement ,leather goods ,cigarettes , leaf tobacco and pharmaceutical goods was sent to Tibet in exchange of musk, wool ,yaks tail, silver, gold. As often said by the locals, “almost everything” was carried to Tibet. From Tibet the raw wool constituted the 90 percent of the Tibet’s annual export to India, which in turn some of them find their way to the Indian mills and the remaining was re-exported to Liverpool and America.
Kalimpong, a centre of convergence: trade, town and people

Almost seven years since the trade started, the landscape of the area started to change. To increase the efficiency of the goods circulation, the overland traffic was mechanized, half way though. Teesta valley extension of the Darjeeling Himalayan railway was completed upto Gaillekhola (12 miles from kalimpong) and opened for traffic in 1915. The considerable effort was put to improve the cart road from Teesta bazaar to kalimpong. This “annihilation of space and time” to ensure the increased mobility of goods was directly set against the dire consequence of toiling lives of many. Considering the mountain ecologies, road construction across the asymmetrical hilly terrain presented various Ecological challenges and sometimes even cost lives. All these painstaking hard work of subalterns helped kalimpong at last to gradually glide towards urbanization. Thanks to their dreadful labor, it was no longer oblivion to the social economic and political development that was taking place beyond Teesta.

The rural setting of the was not a hindrance to the business minded individuals; it was trade all that matter. The rural setting began to get transfer and got a further impetus when Rev. J.A graham proposed to develop a Kalimpong into a town. Hence in 1916 it was declared as subdivision basically as a precondition to develop it as a town. While describing Kalimpong as a hill town, it is intriguing to point out that ,it did not presented a prototype of romantic English country home away from congestion of cities and politics of Indian plains. It certainly lacked the typical hill station characteristics like others in the eastern Himalayan or may be in the India. It did not offer a cool climate like that of neighboring

Darjeeling to develop it as a sanatorium or as a seasonal retreat with their colonial social life, gaiety and style. Moreover, even the educational institution that was established did not show any parity with the institution of neighboring hill station. The most prominent educational establishment in the region was St. Andrews colonial homes(1900) which was situated on an estate of 611 acres . The main object behind the establishment was to provide for children wholly or partly of British or other European descent, such an education and training based upon protestant principle, as many fit then for emigration to British colony or for suitable work elsewhere. Other institutions were primarily targeted to train and educate the natives of the region .In 1925 Himalayan hotel was built, the only European establishment of David McDonald to cater the European and British visitors. The total no. of European in 1941 was 529 out of total 11,958 people in town. Therefore it can certainly be said that kalimpong was not a so called favored resort of recreation. It was truly a place set aside for trade and commerce thriving with activity filled with seasonal bustling of the mule caravans to and from the Tibet.

Not so long, Kalimpong originally a hamlet, evolved as a vibrant “social space” in this process, where various individual encountered each other in the similar social and economic sphere. It became an ingress for the Tibetans to enter the outside world and gateway to enter Tibet for many foreign scholars, artists,

adventurers, missionaries. During the times of political instability, it became a major hub of information and working ground for Japanese spies, Tibetan revolutionaries, and British intelligence networks. Scholars argues that, this little town became a major gossip factory for news for the country across the border. Hence, Mr. Dorje Tharchin (Rdo rje mthar phyin) ,A Christian catechist from kinnaur , in 1925,found the location appropriate for the establishment of his press in kalimpong. It was happened to be the first long-lasting newspaper in the Tibetan language, entitled “Yul phyogs so so’i gsar ’gyur me long”, or “The Mirror of News from All Sides of the World”, and later known as “The Tibet Mirror”. It was a small publication but had a far reaching circulation and it found a wide readership in places like Assam, Darjeeling ,Bhutan ,Sikkim, Tibet, Kashmir, Almora ,Himachal and Nepal. Eventually, it became a vehicle for the dissemination of modern idea and information to the monastic land of far Tibet and adjoining areas.

However, the prosperous times were not to last forever. After 1950, with the formation of PLA and the occupation of Tibet, gradually all the wool was diverted to china and American buyers withdrew from the market. Soon after 12 years, boundary disputes and Sino- Indian war resulted into the closing of borders and the trade was brought to a complete halt. Responding to the changing political and Geo-economic transformation in the region, all the traders shifted their business to a more lucrative location and Kalimpong became a sleepy town. The reminiscences of trade still lingers among the locals, and they often temporally create the bygone years as a golden era that Kalimpong has once experienced.

This is just fragment of the whole picture that I have attempted to present, it is beyond the purview of thisarticle to compress and talk about the wider past events.

[Diki Sherpa, MPhil research scholar from the university of Delhi.]

Via DT



तीन विधायकहरूले ममता व्यानर्जीसित कालेबुङ जिल्ला गठनको घोषणाको निम्ति आभार व्यक्त गरयो

11:28 PM
दार्जीलिङ, कालेबुङ अनि खरसाङका तीनजना विधायकहरू क्रमैले श्री अमर सिहं राई, श्रीमती सरिता राई अनि डा. रोहित शर्माले आज माननीय मुख्यमन्त्री सुश्री ममता व्यानर्जीसित भेटवार्ता गरी कालेबुङ जिल्ला गठनको घोषणाको निम्ति आभार व्यक्त गर्दै दार्जीलिङ पहाड़को जनतालाई प्रशासनिक सुविधा प्रदान गर्नुको निम्ति अझै थप जिल्ला अनि महकुमाहरू निर्माण गर्नुपर्ने माग पनि पेश गरयो।

विधानसभामा आज माननीय राज्यपाल केशरीनाथ तिवारीजीको सम्बोधन कार्यक्रमको समापनपछि तीनजना विधायकले सुश्री ममता व्यानर्जीले उनकै च्याम्बरमा गएर सौहार्दमूलक भेटघाट अनि बातचीत गरेको थियो। विशेषरूपले कालेबुङलाई जिल्ला बनाउने प्रक्रिया शुरू गरिएकोमा माननीय मुख्यमन्त्री महोदयालाई समग्र पहाड़वासीको पक्षमा धन्यबाद दिइयो। यसको साथसाथमा खरसाङ महकुमालाई पनि जिल्ला बनाइनुपर्ने, मिरिकलाई महकुमा बनाइनुपर्ने तथा दार्जीलिङ पहाड़को सर्ववृहत खण्ड विकास क्षेत्र बिजनबारीलाई पनि महकुमा बनाइनुपर्ने पनि मुख्यमन्त्रीसमक्ष अपील गरियो। पहाड़का मानिसहरूले दीर्घकालदेखि विभिन्न प्रशासनिक समस्याहरू झेलिरहेको कारणले गर्दा जिल्ला अनि महकुमाहरूको विस्तार गरिन आवश्यक रहेको पनि मुख्यमन्त्रीलाई अवगत गराइयो।
तीन विधायकहरूले ममता व्यानर्जीसित कालेबुङ जिल्ला गठनको घोषणाको निम्ति आभार व्यक्त गरयो
मुख्यमन्त्री ममता व्यानर्जीले पनि पहाड़का विधायकहरूको उक्त अपीललाई सम्मान गर्दै सकरात्मक आश्वासन प्रदान गर्नुभएको छ। जिल्ला अनि महकुमा विस्तारकार्यको निम्ति थुप्रै औपचारिकता अनि पूर्वाधारहरूमाथि कार्य गर्नुपर्ने हुनाले यस विषय़मा चाड़ै कार्यान्वन गर्न नसकिने भएतापनि भविष्यमा उक्त विषयहरूमाथि राज्य सरकारले अवश्यै सकरात्मप पहल गर्ने माननीय मुख्यमन्त्री महोदयाले आश्वासन प्रदान गर्नुभएको छ।




Sikkim CM Pawan Chamling's Effigy burnt in Kalimpong

9:34 AM
Writes MUKESH SHARMA 

Kalimpong,15th June Pasang Tamang and his independent party today burned effigies of Sikkim chief minister Dr Pawan Chamling at Damber Chowk Kalimpong.

Tamang with around 150 supporters first took out a rally from the town. The supporters,who were carrying black flags and placards, raised slogans against Chamling demanding apology for his statement.

The protest came nearly a month after after Sikkim chief minister Dr Pawan Chamling while addressing a Sakewa celebration programme at Singithang Ground Namchi said that Sikkimese Nepalis must be clear that Gorkhas are people who had come to India to serve in the army in the past and later settled in different parts of the country.
Sikkim CM Pawan Chamling's Effigy burnt in Kalimpong
Sikkim CM Pawan Chamling's Effigy burnt in Kalimpong
He later added that the Sikkim Nepalis are not the same as the Gorkhas. Despite similarity in culture and tradition there is no similarity of the Sikkim Nepalis with the so-called Gorkhas, he said.

The statement was condemned by many but no one came forward. Pasang Tamang today said, “We as a small party waited for bigger parties to condemn the statement but they did not utter a word. Dr Pawan Chamling is a pride of our community and such a statement has hurt our sentiment.”

He said this is just the beginning of series of programmes.“We just want him to take back his words. If he does not we will hold protests in the Darjeeling Hills, Terai, Dooars and finally Delhi.

Via kalimpongnewsexpress

Kiwi fruit debut in Darjeeling

10:55 AM
Kalimpong, June 14: Kiwi plantation that started for the first time in the Darjeeling hills in 2014 on an experimental basis appears to have borne fruit as farms are laden with the oval-shaped edible berries.

The Darjeeling Krishi Vigyan Kendra, which operates under the Uttar Banga Krishi Viswavidhalaya, had planted kiwi fruits as a pilot project in its farms in Upper Dalapchand village, 6km from here, in 2014.

It had acquired different varieties of the fruit from Dirang in Arunachal Pradesh.

"We had set up eight units in our farm and planted 10 saplings each in all of them. Although, it usually takes three years for a kiwi plant to bear fruits, our plants started bearing fruits in the second year itself," said M.W. Moktan, senior scientist and head of the kendra.

The kiwi fruit, also known as Chinese gooseberry, grows on vines like grapes. Most kiwis are oval in shape with a fuzzy brown plumage. Their insides have bright green flesh and a circle of dark seeds in the middle. The fruits make up a good commercial crop.
Kiwis in the Dalapchand farm in Kalimpong. Picture by Chinlop Fudong Lepcha
The senior scientist said: "Depending on the outcome of our experiment, we want to promote kiwi as an alternative commercial crop in the hills. A kg of kiwi costs between Rs 400 and Rs 600 in Siliguri markets." "The fruits in the farm will be allowed to mature for about a month and then they would be taken to the lab for quality test. We will be testing the fruits' colour, flavour and juice content. If everything goes well, we will carry out awareness campaigns among the farmers to encourage them to take to kiwi plantation," Moktan said.

Moktan added: "As far as I know, this is the first experiment with kiwi plantation in the Darjeeling hills. Sikkim had started kiwi plantation before us."Cultivation of kiwi fruit spread from China in the early 20th century to New Zealand, where the first commercial plantings occurred.

Experimenting with kiwi plantation appears to be bearing fruit with the woody vines at its farm in Upper Dalapchand village near here laden with the oval-shaped edible berry also known as Chinese gooseberry.


Source Telegraph


Mangal Singh Rajput's son held for raping a minor in Kalimpong

10:07 AM
Writes RAJEEV RAVIDAS

Kalimpong, June 13: A probationary clerical staff member of the Kalimpong municipality was arrested from his home last night for allegedly raping a minor on Saturday night.

According to the girl's mother, the 16-year-old child was picked up by Arpan Singh Rajput while she was on her way home after buying grocery items from a fair price shop on Saturday evening. Arpan kept her confined in a garage overnight.

"Arpan forcibly put her on his bike and took her to a garage nearby. She was kept there overnight and he raped her repeatedly. We looked for her everywhere but could not trace her," the mother said.

"My daughter returned home after fleeing from the garage and she told us about the incident".

The girl's family lodged a police complaint against Arpan yesterday.

The Class VIII girl said Arpan repeatedly threatened her and asked her not to reveal anything to anyone.
Arpan, Mangal Singh Rajput's son held for raping a minor in Kalimpong
Arpan, Mangal Singh Rajput's son held for raping a minor in Kalimpong
"Arpan, 24, is the son of Gorkha Janmukti Morcha supporter Mangal Singh Rajput, who burnt himself to death during the party's agitation for Gorkhaland in the middle of 2013," said a police source.

A police source said Arpan had been booked under Section 4 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act, 2012. If proved guilty, he could face imprisonment for seven years or lifetime.

Arpan was produced in the Darjeeling sessions judge court today and remanded in judicial custody for 14 days.


Telegraph


Hill TMC proposals on new Kalimpong district, Mirik sub-division

9:55 AM
TMC
DARJEELING 10 Jun 2016 The Trinamool Congress hill unit has submitted to the Darjeeling district administration its suggestions on a new Kalimpong district and Mirik sub-division. The suggestions incorporate a wide range of proposals such as extending the existing boundaries, forming new sub-divisions and blocks, and setting up expert committees to expedite the process in a planned and systematic manner.

The hill TMC has proposed the creation of three sub-divisions under the new Kalimpong district for better administrative functioning. However, the areas to be incorporated in the sub-divisions have not been identified or specified by the party.

The TMC also wants the number of community development blocks to be increased to eight and the formation of a Teesta Highway development block. At present, Kalimpong sub-division has three blocks, Kalimpong I, Kalimpong II and Gorubathan.
Hill TMC proposals on new Kalimpong district, Mirik sub-division
Hill TMC proposals on new Kalimpong district, Mirik sub-division
The proposals also include increasing gram panchayat members to at least 7-10 in each GP for better representation. The Kalimpong sub-division comprises 42 gram panchayats at present. Further, the TMC also wants areas adjacent to Gorubathan block and Kalijhora under Kurseong to be included in the new district, although specifications have not been proposed.

“These are important factors that need to be looked into while forming the new district of Kalimpong. It must be remembered that Kalimpong is a vast area touching some areas of the Dooars in the plains. Administratively too, we want Kalimpong district to be viable to the people, hence the suggestions,” said NB Khawas, the hill TMC general secretary.

Regarding upgrading Mirik to a sub-division, presently one of the eight blocks in the hills, the TMC wants the area of Gopal Dhara tea estate that falls under Sukhaypokhari block in Darjeeling sub-division, and Seyok tea garden under Kurseong sub-division, to be added to the new sub-division.

It has also proposed the formation of three blocks in the new Mirik sub-division, Mirik at present being one of the blocks under Kurseong sub-division. The party also wants gram panchayat members in Mirik to be increased to 10 from the present six.

Another proposal is the bifurcation of the Jorebungalow-Sukhaypokhari development block and creation of a Sonada-Rungbull block with seven existing gram panchayats of Rungbull and Sonada areas. “We have already placed our suggestions before the Panchayat and Rural Development department through the Darjeeling district magistrate,” said Khawas.

The bifurcation of the Kurseong development block with 14 GPs and up-gradation of the Darjeeling-Pulbazar block with 23 gram panchayats to a sub-division is one another proposal of the hill TMC. The party has suggested the formation of a committee comprising experts and political and social organisation representatives to avoid any controversies which could delay the process of creating a Kalimpong district and Mrik sub-division.

Source EOIC

After Kalimpong district demand to upgrade more hill areas

9:37 AM
Writes Vivek Chhetri

Darjeeling, June 10: The state government's decision to create Kalimpong district and Mirik subdivision has triggered demands to upgrade Bijanbari block to a subdivision and carve out Sonada-Rangbull block out of Sukhiapokhari.

The demand is being raised not only by political parties like the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and the Trinamul Congress (Hills) but also by local people who have formed organisations like the Bijanbari Subdivision Demand Committee and Block Establishment Co-ordination Committee (of Sonada-Rangbull).

The convener of the Bijanbari committee, L.M. Lama, said: "Bijanbari is one of the biggest blocks in the region. While we welcome the state government's decision to upgrade Mirik to a subdivision, we request the government to look into our demand to make Bijanbari a subdivision."
Darjeeling Map 
The committee wants the government to create three blocks - Bijanbari, Rimbick-Lodhama and Rangneet-Lebong - in the proposed Bijanbari subdivision.

Currently, Bijanbari block is in Darjeeling (Sadar) subdivision.

The Block Establishment Co-ordination Committee has raised a similar demand for Sonada Rangbull.

Committee general secretary Rajesh Chauhan said: "Since 2009, residents of Sonada-Rangbull area have been demanding a separate block. People of areas like Namsu, Balasun and Margaret Hope have to take three vehicles to reach Sukhiapokhri (for administrative work). This causes great hardships to them."

The Morcha and Trinamul (Hills) have backed both the demands.

N.B. Khawash, general secretary of Trinamul (Hills), said: "We have submitted a written request to the district magistrate of Darjeeling (on June 8) for creating a Sonada-Rangbull block, bifurcation of Kurseong block and the upgrade of Bijanbari to a subdivision."

The hill subdivisions of Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Kurseong have eight blocks.

Gorubathan is the largest block (442.72sqkm), followed by Bijanbari (known as Darjeeling-Pulbazar) spread over 416sqkm. The population of Bijanbari (1.26 lakh) is more than Gorubathan (60,663).

Kurseong's Mirik, which is set to become a subdivision, is the smallest block in the hills (119.30sqkm with a population of 46,374 according to the 2011 Census.

Source Telegraph


103rd Foundation Day of the First Gorkha Library in India

9:25 AM
 Gorkhas and Library: A Centurial Conspectus

Writes: Animesh Rai*

Heartiest Congratulations to all on the 103rd Foundation Day of the Gorkha Library, Kurseong. The first Gorkha library in India was started at Kurseong on 8th June 1913. If we look into the history of this library, hundred years ago, a Lepcha named Jombey Paval had founded it with the help of his friends. Paval was originally from Kalimpong and worked at Kurseong hospital. The library was started in his rented house.

Initially the colonial administration suspected the formation of the Gorkha library, as the Bengalis had started an underground group like Anisulan Samity to challenge the colonial administration. Pandit Tulsi Bhattarai, the former member of the Gorkha Library Executive Committee said “the then founders of the library convinced the administration by stressing on the need of a reading place for the Gorkhas, who were mostly poor and illiterate”. Pandit Bhattarai claims that during the mid 1980’s, he was also an activist for Gorkhaland and had stopped Jyoti Basu, the then Chief minister of Bengal from entering the hills.

The idea of having a Gorkha library was earlier raised by Pratiman Singh Lama. He was highly influenced by the reading and discussing habits of Europeans at Darjeeling Planter’s Association. Lama was further inspired by the feeling which can be theoretically equated as ‘Public Sphere’. According to the German sociologists, Jurgen Habermas ‘Public Sphere’ is a platform where people can discuss anything freely without any pressure or threat of any kind.

According to Chalmers (2009:127), P.S. Lama often argued that on having a public sphere like the British system of library and rational discussions, “we can reap all and what honours we could achieve”. The aspirations and demands of the people for the foundation of the Gorkha library led Parasmani Pradhan to form Nepali Sahitya Samaj. Through this group he tried to unite the writers for the creation of an organised civil society.

In 1915, philanthropist Sardar Bahadur Lama donated Rs. 500 for the construction of the library building and the construction was further funded by the Kurseong Municipality. The local papers like Chandrika which was edited by Parasmani Pradhan started to print fund raising notes for the construction of the library.

Finally, the present Gorkha Library at Kurseong was completed at the cost of over Rs. 3,000 and started to operate from 1918. In the inauguration ceremony of the library, Sir H. Quinton, the British Civil Servant was invited as the chief guest. He was welcomed with songs and dances performed by the artists of the Gorkha Amateur Club. In a way of highlighting the local homogeneity and harmony, the chief guest was offered a flower garland by a Nepali and a silk scarf by a Bhutia, who were dressed in their traditional attires. The integrity of the hill community can clearly be revealed by surfing into the foundational tales of this Gorkha library which was institutionalised collectively by Lepchas, Bhutias and the Nepalis. The present Vice-Chancellor of Sikkim University, Prof. T.B. Subba argues that when the Hill Men’s Social Union was formed in 1930’s then the Lepchas, Bhutias and Nepalis had collectively consented to call themselves as Gorkhas and accepted Nepali their language. The Union had also started a monthly magazine called the “Nebula” derived from the abbreviation of Nepali, Bhutia and Lepcha.

Almost after one hundred years, the social fabric of the local Gorkha community is breaking up across the political lines and lust for reservation, representation, tribal development boards among others. Our society is in a need of re-organisation and rejuvenation, politics of opportunitism and favouritism based on kin and kith relations has damaged the traditional social homogeneity. Amidst such moments of despair and disrepair, Mr. Bipal Barailey, 21year old school dropout, resident of Munsong tea estate, 21 kms away from Kalimpong has opened a library in his village. The library is being run in one of his rooms with few books and chairs. The era has come to retest the Gorkhas in the scales of communal unity and harmony. There seems to be a need for more Paval’s, friends and like-minded people who can come forward and help in the establishment of this library through any ways or means. The rejuvenation of the century old love for libraries for social empowerment must be accepted and assisted as a new hope for the creation of a better society.

Nabu, a GJM student wing Central Committee member from Kalimpong wants to appeal all the members of the civil society to kindly help the library by donating old books. He claims that this is an apolitical affair and everybody should unify irrespective of political backgrounds. Amid such moments of century old historical coincidences, in another case all the political parties of the region has been called by the district administration in a dialogue for the creation of Kalimpong district. Let us hope that the present political parties too can come over their differences and work together not just for Kalimpong alone but for the creation of Gorkhaland as well.

In a way of concluding, let us recollect the words of Prof. Mahendra P. Lama, the former Vice-Chancellor of Sikkim University. He used to say “Grandpa and Grandma passed away. We did not record their knowledge. As a result, they took away the precious libraries with them. Let us learn to archive things by recording and let us not repeat our mistakes”.

Libraries are after all depositories of many things like knowledge and wisdom, history and identity and many more. Let us all come together and not regret later in willingly watering the library planted by Mr. Barailey.

*Animesh Rai is a research student in the Department of Sociology, Sikkim University.


GJM & JAP both demands Inclusion of Dooars in Kalimpong district

11:12 AM
Vivek Chhetri

Darjeeling, June 7: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and the Jana Andolan Party, two principal parties in the hills, have suggested the incorporation of additional areas from the Dooars in the proposed Kalimpong district.

The proposals were made at an all-party meeting convened by Darjeeling district magistrate Anurag Srivastava here today to seek feedback on the creation of Kalimpong district and Mirik subdivision. Sipchu, Toribari, Bagracote Pathorjhora, Ellenbari,Chilauna and Samsing - the Dooars areas the Morcha wanted to be in the Kalimpong district - are part of some of the 398 mouzas the party had demanded to be brought under the GTA's jurisdiction.

Roshan Giri, the general secretary of the Morcha, said: "We support the creation of Kalimpong district, a demand we had first raised. We want areas like Sipchu, Toribari, Bagracote Pathorjhora, Ellenbari,Chilauna and Samsing (which are presently in Jalpaiguri district) to be incorporated in the new district. These areas are contiguous to the present Kalimpong subdivision."
The all-party meeting in Darjeeling on Tuesday. Picture by Suman Tamang

Giri said the Morcha wanted three subdivisions and seven blocks in the new district, and three blocks in Mirik subdivision.

Anmole Prasad, a member of the JAP's bureau, said the party had made a written submission on various aspects of the formation of the Kalimpong district. The JAP also wants parts of the Jalpaiguri district to be included in the new district.

"We want the boundaries of the new district to be redrawn so that its two sides have highways and a compact zone is created," said Prasad.

The JAP basically wants areas lying north of NH31 in Jalpaiguri district to be the southern boundary of the Kalimpong district and areas like Kalijhora, Lohapul, Suntalay and Rambi, which are along NH10 and in the Kurseong subdivision, to be the western border.

The JAP wants Kalimpong district to have three subdivisions and 10 blocks. The party demanded at the meeting that four blocks be created to make up the new Mirik subdivision.

"We also seek the formation of a committee comprising stakeholders, NGOs, experts and citizens to monitor and assist the formation of the district and the subdivision. Future meetings should be held at respective locations (Kalimpong and Mirik) to enable detailed discussions and new administrative townships should be created there to de-congest the area," said Prasad.

Representatives of parties like the GNLF, ABGL, CPRM and the Trinamul Congress also attended the meeting.

Srivastava said the parties had been asked to submit the suggestions in writing by tomorrow evening.

"An all-party meeting is usually called before the start of the process to create a new district. We have asked political parties to submit their suggestions in writing by tomorrow evening so that we can go through them and then prepare a report based on administrative feasibility. The report will be submitted to the government as early as possible," said Srivastava.

Telegraph

All hill party meeting for Kalimpong district in Darjeeling

10:59 AM
Vivek Chhetri

Darjeeling, June 6: The state government has taken the first concrete step to upgrade Kalimpong subdivision to a district with the Darjeeling district administration calling an all-party meeting here tomorrow for their feedback.

Assembly elections were fought in Kalimpong mainly on the district demand plank.

Anurag Srivastava, the district magistrate of Darjeeling, today confirmed that the all-party meeting would be held here tomorrow.

"The purpose of the meeting is to get feedback from all political parties on the new district. A report will then be forwarded to the personnel department," he said.

The meeting has been scheduled for 4pm in the district magistrate's conference hall.

Former Kalimpong MLA Harka Bahadur Chhetri, who had left the Gorkha Janm-ukti Morcha to float the Jana Andolan Party and made Kalimpong district one of its prime agendas in the Assembly polls, today thanked Mamata Banerjee.
Kalimpong District Map
Kalimpong District Map

"At the onset, I would like to thank the chief minister for starting the process... I am told that on May 30, the chief minister had directed the chief secretary and home secr-etary to start the process and in less than a week, a meeting has been called. This should be a lesson for the Morcha. One needs to deliver rather than make promises," he said.

Harka said even though he would not be able to attend the meeting, other JAP leaders would be present in full strength.

Roshan Giri, the general secretary of the Morcha, said his party would be represented at the meeting.

Telegraph


GTA's borewells to overcome water crisis meets opposition from environmentalists

11:04 AM
NGO
Vivek Chhetri and Rajeev Ravidas

June 3: The GTA's move to overcome water crisis in the hills by digging borewells has met with opposition from environmentalists who say machines shouldn't drill the fragile land without a proper study.

The Darjeeling district magistrate deputed a hydrogeologist under the state government to submit a report on three borewells dug by individuals in the Kalimpong municipality area. The hydrogeologist said the bore-wells had been dug without permission from appropriate authorities.

The GTA had already identified 10 places to dig borewells and set in motion the administrative process for it.

Mark Lyngdoh, a young entrepreneur, is believed to be the first person to dig a borewell in the hills. He successfully dug the borewell in the Hill Top locality in Kalimpong a couple of months back and over 6,000 litres of water could be pumped out a day.

Samden Dukpa, executive director, public health engineering department, GTA, had said the borewell dug by Lyngdoh should be the first in the hills. "I am not aware of the existence of any other borewell in the hills," said Dukpa.
Water being pumped out of the borewell dug by Mark Lyngdoh in Kalimpong's Hill Top in May.
Picture by Chinlop Fudong Lepcha
One had never tried a bore-well before in the hills because of the terrain where water is hard to be found below the surface.

After Lyngdoh, two more individuals dug borewells in Kalimpong which is located around 4,200ft.

Dukpa today said world renowned hydrogeologist Dr. Ritesh Arya had identified 10 locations in the hills for digging borewells.

"In February, we had engaged Dr Arya to carry out a preliminary survey on the feasibility of drilling borewells in the hills. Dr Arya has the experience of digging such wells successfully in high-altitude places like Ladakh, Leh, Shimla and Dharamsala. The (GTA) chief executive (Bimal Gurung) himself is very keen on the project. We intend to carry out pilot projects to drill borewells at 10 different sites in Darjeeling, Kurseong and Kalimpong and tenders will be floated soon," he said.

Environmentalists and the general public, especially in Kalimpong, however, raised questions on drilling the fragile hills to extract water. The public's concern has found resonance with the district administration as well.

Wing Commander (retd) Praful Rao, the president of Save The Hills, a Kalimpong-based NGO, said: "A proper survey needs to conducted before the mountains are drilled. The impact of drilling the fragile mountains needs to be studied, the type of aquifers beneath the surface needs to be understood, the quality of water needs to be tested and the amount of water that can be extracted needs to be carefully analysed before such an adventure can be allowed."

He went on: "The water scarcity in the hills is more about mismanagement and drilling should be the last resort. There are also enough research materials that show that drilling of fragile mountains is not among the best options. There were instances when digging of deep wells had dried up springs in the mountain areas."

Asked about the issue, Anurag Srivastava, the Darjeeling district magistrate, said he had asked Soumit Chatterjee, a hydrogeologist in the state water investigation department, to submit a report on the borewells in Kalimpong.

Chatterjee who visited Kalimpong yesterday, said the borewells had been dug without permission.

"All borewells dug in the hills are illegal. Permission has to be obtained from the district level ground water resources development authority and the state level ground water resources development authority for digging borewells under the West Bengal Groundwater Resources (Management, Control and Regulation) Act, 2005."

The hydrogeologist said the district level authority would grant permission to extract water till 50 cubic meters per hour. "Beyond the 50 cubic meter mark, permission has to be sought from the state authority," he said.

The official is expected to submit his report to the district magistrate soon. "We were not aware that drilling was taking place in the hills. Apart from merely looking into administrative technicalities, one has to take into account what the impact would be on a young mountain like the Himalayas if thousands of deep wells are dug," said Chatterjee.

Zion Lepcha, the vice-chairman of Kalimpong municipality, said: "After concerns were raised by a section of the society, we have informally asked those who have dug borewells to stop extracting water until we get experts to carry out a scientific study of our area."

A GTA official, who didn't want to be named, said the hill body was not aware of the rules restricting the digging of borewells.

Another GTA official said it was to be found out if the two authorities referred to by Chatterjee had jurisdiction over the hills.



Via Telegraph


Jan Andolan Party thanks Mamata Banerjee for Kalimpong District nod

2:12 PM
Writes Mukesh Sharma 

Kalimpong,31st May Jan Andolan Party thanks the State Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who has instructed the process of formation of the five districts in West Bengal to be expedited.

The Party which started the movement of Kalimpong District through the banner of Kalimpong District Demand Committee before the formation of party has hail the CM for taking the issue.

JAP President Dr Harka Bahadur Chhetri have told that on 23rd May he met the CM and congratulated her on her victory and requested to expedite the process of Kalimpong District. He said She have ordered her Chief and Home secretaries to expedited the process.

He said our party raised the issue  but when she announced the Formation of Kalimpong District she took my name but after our party lost in election the decision can been seen as that she does not want Morcha to take credit of Kalimpong District in coming days .

Jan Andolan Party thanks Mamata Banerjee Kalimpong District nod
JAP Press Conference
The decision for the formation was passed by the State Cabinet in December 2015.

Meanwhile JAP party secretary Nayan Pradhan addressing a press meet at the party office today that this is our victory despite our loss , we and people of Kalimpong thanks her.

Amir Basnet JAP youth leader said the dream seen by Kalimpong mass and the work done by JAP party to fulfill the dreams will now turn reality . He added that “we don’t believe in giving assurance but we deliver’.

Via Kalimpong News Express


Kalimpong District to be formed soon claims JAP

6:15 PM
Kalimpong  31st may 2016 After losing the assembly election in Kalimpong Jana Andolan Party JAP is trying to consolidate it support base in Kalimpong and in such an attempt they claim that the formation of the Kalimpong Distric has got green signal from the chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. JAP president  Dr Harka Bahadur Chhetri after the election met the chief minister and have had a fruitful discussion on the matter

"Though JAP lost the election, we will strive hard to fulfill Kalimpongbasi's aspirations and keep our promises of creating Kalimpong Zilla.

And we have already started the process for upgradation of Kalimpong sub-division into district JAP President Dr H.B Chhetri met WB chief minister Miss Mamata Banerjee on 23rd May and had a discussion about the same for almost 45 minutes in a very cordial environment as a result, Chief Minister has already instructed her govt to expedite the process of formation of 5 new districts that includes Kalimpong as well" said Jana Andolan Party's youth leader, Pankaj Chhetri.
Kalimpong District to be formed soon claims JAP
Kalimpong District to be formed soon claims JAP
He further added "We are thankful to our president for taking this initiative....losing election didn't deter him from his goal. And I can confidently say that if ever Kalimpong district is formed, that surely will be formed soon, its all due to hard work, dedication, perseverance, and vision of our President Dr. H B Chhetri."


GJM and JAP on agitation path to protect their support base

8:31 AM
Writes Vivek Chhetri and Rajeev Ravidas

May 30: After a bitter and hard fought-Assembly election, the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha and its rival, Jana Andolan Party, are now busy protecting their support base and are on the path of agitation in the hills less than a month after the poll.

Four days after the poll results were announced, the JAP started a relay hunger strike at Tricone Park in Kalimpong from May 23 demanding streamlining of water distribution system in town. The party has threatened to intensify the protest if the problem is not resolved by the public health engineering under the GTA and the residents are not given water on a regular basis.

"We are likely to continue the dharna for some more time since the administration has done precious little to resolve the problem," said Nayan Pradhan, JAP secretary.
GJM and JAP on agitation path to protect their support base
The JAP is at present holding meetings at block and village levels to chalk out its future programmes.

The Morcha, too, has decided to launch an agitation to demand land rights to people living in tea gardens and cinchona plantations and tribal status for 11 hill communities.

Suraj Subba, the general secretary of the Janmukti Parcha-Patta Sangharsh Committee, said: "We have decided to hold gate meetings in front of all 87 tea gardens in the hills and in the cinchona plantations on June 13 for an hour before the start work. This is the start of our agitation and we will vigorously pursue our demand."

The Morcha's youth wing, the Gorkha Janmukti Yuva Morcha, has also decided to hold a rally in Darjeeling on June 2 to seek tribal status for 11 hill communities.

"The rally will start from Darjeeling Motor Stand and wind its way to Chowrastha," said Amrit Yonzone, the spokesman for the Yuva Morcha.

Telegraph

Dead body found at Mela ground of Kalimpong

9:54 AM
Writes Mukesh Sharma

Kalimpong 27th May Dead body was found at the Mela ground of Kalimpong town this morning. The body was found lying in a pool of blood which poured out from his head section from the staircase of Mela Ground. Some player and local who comes to ground to play and exercise saw the body and informed Kalimpong Police which reached the spot and first identified the body. The dead body is identified as that of of Kushal Chhetri (38). Kushal Chhetri was working in a hotel at motar stand attached nearby to the spot. Police recovered the body and have sent it for autopsy at Kalimpong Sub Divisional Hospital. Police has started its investigation after registering a case .

Dead body of Kushal Chhetri (38)


Via kalimpongnewsexpress


देशमा हार्‌यो, कालिम्पोङमा जित्यो - महेन्द्र पी लामा

9:27 AM
- महेन्द्र पी लामा

हामी छुट्टै राज्यका निम्ति संघर्षरत सबैको लागि गत केही सातामा विभिन्न अखबारहरूमा निस्केका चार–पाँचवटा समाचार अति नै चिन्ताजनक छन् । प्रथमतः १३ मेको टाइम्स अफ इन्डियामा दार्जिलिङका सांसदलाई संसद्को एक प्रमुख पब्लिक एकाउन्टस् कमिटीबाट हटाइएको खबर छापिएको छ । यस कमिटीबाट दार्जिलिङको सांसदलाई आफ्नै पार्टी भारतीय जनता पार्टीले नै हटाएको हो । यसअघि दार्जिलिङको सांसदलाई बीजेपीको उत्तरपूर्वी क्षेत्रहरूको देखरेख गर्न पदबाट पनि हटाइएको थियो ।

त्यसअघि दार्जिलिङका सांसदको नेतृत्वमा बनिएको जमिन उपलब्धि अधिग्रहण विषय संसद्को संयुक्त समितिको अवधि बढाइएपछि पनि कुनै ठोस रिपोर्ट नै प्रस्तुत गर्नु नसक्दा एनडीए सरकारले जमिन अधिग्रहण जस्तो महत्त्वपूर्ण मामलामा हार मात्रै नमानेर संसद्मा यसको परिचर्चा नै बन्द गर्‌यो । प्रश्नै–प्रश्न उठ्छ यहाँ ? एकपटक गोजुमुमोले ‘हामीले पठाएको सांसद केन्द्रीय मन्त्री' हुन्छ भन्थ्यो अहिले ऊ सांसदलाई नै आफ्नै पार्टीले यस्तो हालत बनाएपछि, दार्जिलिङमा आएर २८ दिनमै भोट जितेर गएको सांसदले संसद्मा छुट्टै राज्यको नामसमेत पनि उच्चारण गर्न सक्ला ? अब तीन वर्ष छ ।

दार्जिलिङका मानिसहरूले भूमिपुत्र र जातिको चिनारीसमेतलाई गलहत्याएर पठाएको सांसदले खोइ केन्द्रीय विश्वविद्यालय ल्याएको स्मार्ट सिटी खोइ ? दार्जिलिङलाई उत्तरपूर्वी क्षेत्रको काउन्सिलमा हालेको खोइ ? चिया कमानमा मानिसहरू बेसहारा भई भोकभोकै मर्दा पनि सांसद कहाँ छन्, सांसदलाई दार्जिलिङ ल्याएर जिताउने पार्टी कहाँ छन् ? पञ्चायत व्यवस्था के भो ?
महेन्द्र पी लामा
महेन्द्र पी लामा
दोस्रो खबर, १३ मईको टाइम्स अफ इन्डियामा नै यत्रो ठूलो छापिएको थियो । बिहारको समस्तीपुरमा राजेन्द्रप्रसाद कृषकीय विश्वविद्यालय स्थापना गर्ने बिललाई लोकसभा र राज्य सभामा एकै दिनमा पारित मात्रै नगरिएर त्यही दिन राष्ट्रपतिले पनि स्वीकृति दिए । संसदीय इतिहासमा यो एउटा नौलो घटना थियो । अर्थात् सरकारले चाहेको खण्डमा विश्वविद्यालयको बिल एकै दिनमा पनि पारित गरिन सकिनेरहेछ हाम्रो सांसदले चाहिँ के गर्दैछ ? गोजामुमोले तीन–तीनवटा बजेटमा विश्वविद्यालयको घोषणा गरिनेछ भनी चारैपट्टि ढोल पिट्यो । डीपीआर बनाउनलाई लाखौँ रुपैयाँ खर्च गर्‌यो ।

मङपुमा आफ्नो हक अधिकार नहुँदानहुँदै पनि विश्वविद्यालयको निम्ति जमिन देखाइ टोप्लयो । तर विश्वविद्यालयको नमोनिशान छैन । विश्वविद्यालयलाई केन्द्रले दिँदा न डीपीआर चाहिन्छ, न बजेटमा घोषणा गर्नुपर्छ, न पहिल्यैबाट जमिन देखाउनुपर्छ । हामीले बारम्बार यी सत्य कुरा भन्दै आएका छौँ । केन्द्रीय विश्वविद्यालयको निम्ति संसद्मा सरकारले बिल मात्रै ल्याउनुपर्छ, अहिले बिहारको कृषि विश्वविद्यालय झैँ । सो बिल सरकारले ल्याउनुपर्छ, सांसदले ल्याउनुपर्छ ।

खोइ हाम्रो सांसद, खोइ हाम्रो बिल ? एउटा केन्द्रीय विश्वविद्यालयसम्म त ल्याउन नसक्ने सरकार सांसद र गोजुमुमोले छुट्टै राज्यलाई त ‘आकाशको फल आँखा तरी मर' नै बनाइदियो । भोट दिने जनता किन चुप छ ? एक दिन खाएर पाँच वर्ष भोकै बस्नु नै रुचाएको हो कि कुन्नि कहाँबाट हुत्तिएर आएको मान्छेलाई सांसद बनाउने हाम्रो जनताले ?

तेस्रो, रहेका सबै गोर्खा जातिका जातिलाई जानजातिको सूचीमा गाभ्ने जमर्को चल्दैछ । दोहोरी र फेद न टुंगैबिना ‘हाई लेभल' कमिटी केन्द्र सरकारले बनायो भनेर फेरि नाच्यो गोजुमुमोका भाइ भतिजाहरू । एकपटक मुखैमा, आँखाको अगाडि नै र गोर्खे छातीकै सामुने ‘बंग भंग हो बेना' भन्दा पनि यसरी नै अर्थनव्यर्थमा नाचेका थिए यिनीहरू र नाचेका नाचेकै छन् आज पनि । चुनावको अगाडि एनडीए सरकारले एउटा ‘संयुक्त सचिव' स्तरको कमिटी गोर्खाका जातलाई अनुसूचित जनजातिको सूचीमा हाल्नलाई विचार–विमर्शको निम्ति गठन गर्‌यो । यसलाई गोर्खाल्यान्डभन्दा ठूलो उपलब्धि हो भन्नेहरू पनि छन् ।

नोकरशाहीको सबैभन्दा तलका अधिकारीको नेतृत्वमा कमिटी गठन गर्दा मान्छे किन रमाएको ? सचिवस्तरमा, राजनीतिक स्तरमा वा विशेषज्ञ र न्यायाधीशको स्तरमा यो कमिटी बनिनुपर्ने थियो । यो केको ‘उच्चस्तरीय' ? पुङ न पुच्छरमा किन रमाउनु ? यो कमिटीको टर्मस् अफ रेफरेन्स खोइ ? जनजातिको सूचीमा हाल्न पाँचवटा खुड्किला चढ्नुपर्छ । तेस्रो खुड्किलो पुगिसकेको मागलाई फेरि यो कमिटी बनाएर प्रथम खुड्किलोमा किन झार्‌यो ? हिजोअस्ति जनजातिको माग प्रधानमन्त्रीको टेबुलमा छ र प्रधानमन्त्री विदेशबाट फर्किनासाथ पास हुन्छ भन्नेहरू कहाँ छन् आज ?

केही गर्नुपर्दैन । आसामका ६ जाति कोच–राजवंशी, मुतिया, ताई अहोम, मोरान र मुटोकलाई एनडीएका प्रधानमन्त्रीले लोकसभा चुनाव जितेको खण्डमा ६ महिनाभित्र नै जनजातिको सूचीमा हाल्छु भनेर आश्वासन दिएको दुई वर्ष भयो । भर्खरै भएको विधानसभाको चुनावअघि नै हाल्छौँ भनेर सात सदस्यीय कमिटी पनि बनायो, तर केही भएन । दार्जिलिङको सांसद र गोजमुमोले गोर्खाल्यान्ड झैँ यसलाई २०१७ को जीटीएको चुनाव र २०१५ को लोसभा चुनावको मुद्दा बनाउने नै छ । कारण यी दुवैमा यी दुई मुद्दाहरूलाई पार लगाउने न क्षमता छ, न लगनशीलता, न त इमानदारीता नै छ ।-

चौथो गत १५ मईमा टेलिग्राफ खबर कागजमा हामीले भन्दै आएको कुरोलाई नागाल्यान्ड सरकारले लैजान सुरु गरेको खबर छापियो । जापान सरकारले नागाल्यान्डबाट १५ हजार प्रशिक्षित नर्सहरूलाई जापान लगेर त्यहाँका बूढापाकाहरूका हेरचाह गर्नमा रोजगारका निम्ति निम्तो दिने । जापान र विश्वका विकसित राष्ट्रहरू अमेरिका, जर्मनी, फ्रान्स, इङल्यान्ड, क्यानडा आदिमा बूढापाकाहरूको संख्या अति बढी मात्रामा भएकाले चारैतिरबाट नर्सहरू लगेर जाँदैछन् । जापानमा भने बूढापाकाले हजारौँ रुपैयाँ तलब दिएर फिलिपिन्सबाट नर्सहरू ल्याउँछन् । कोरिया–चीन आदि राष्ट्रबाट ऐतिहासिक कारणले जापान नर्सहरू रुचाउँदैन ।

हामीले दार्जिलिङको कुना–कुनामा लोकसभा चुनावको समय दार्जिलिङबाट हजारौँ नर्सहरू जापान र अन्य राष्ट्रहरूमा पठाउने प्रस्तावना र कार्यक्रम अघि ल्याएका थियौँ । हामीले भनेका थियौँ– नर्स ट्रेनिङ स्कुल र केन्द्रहरूमा हाम्रा चेलीबेटीलाई भर्ना गरी, विदेशी भाषाजस्तै जापानिज सिकाएर, यी विदेशी सरकारसँग सम्झौता गरी, हाम्रै दार्जिलिङ र सिक्किम क्षेत्रका हजारौँको संख्यामा विदेश पठाउन प्रबन्ध मिलाउँछौँ भनेर । चुनाव हारेपछि पनि धेरै ठाउँहरूमा यस्तो प्रस्ताव राख्यौँ । म आफैँ जापानका विश्वविद्यालयहरूमा पढाउँदा र त्यहाँका उच्च अधिकारीहरूसँग कुराकानी गर्दा यसमा सहमति सबैले जनाउँथे । संस्कृति, रूप, रङ, लवाइखुवाइ आदिमा हाम्रा ठिटीहरू जापानसँग घतलाग्दो प्रकारले मिल्छन् । तर कसैले यो कुरो अघि बढाएन ।

गत ६ महिनामा उत्तरपूर्वी क्षेत्रका उच्च अधिकारी र राजनीतिक नेताहरूकहाँ विभिन्न कार्यक्रममा मैले यो प्रस्ताव राखेँ । आश्चर्यजनक कुरो, भारत सरकारका उद्योग वाणिज्य मन्त्रालयका अधिकारीहरू र उत्तरपूर्वी दुई राज्यका मुख्यमन्त्रीहरूले यो सुझावलाई टिपेर आज कार्यान्वयन पनि गरेकाले नै, नागा ठिटीहरू र खसिया ठिटीहरू नर्स भएर जापान जाने तरखरमा छन् । जीटीएले यस्तो कुरो सोच्न पनि सक्तैन ? सांसदलाई अत्तोपत्तो छैन हाम्रा ठिटीहरू र उनीहरूका परिवारले झेलेका पिरमर्काबारे । अनि नै दुःखलाग्दो कुरो हो, फोहोरमैला, दुःख–पीडा र अन्धकार भविष्यमा लादिएर पनि जनता ब्युँझिँदैनन् । यो ज्वालामुखी कहिले फुट्ने ? भित्रभित्रै लामाहरू खरानी भएपछि फुटेर पनि ज्वाला ननिस्केला एक दिन ।

पाँचौँ सिक्किमको एउटा नेताले सिक्किमे नेपाली हो, अरू गोर्खा हो, जो नेपालबाट आएर यहाँ बसोवास गरेका हुन् भन्ने एउटा खबर २२ मेमा छापिएपछि सर्वत्र भयानक हिसाबले भत्र्सना गरियो । गोर्खाहरूचाहिँ भारतीय सेनामा भर्ना भएर आएपछि देशको विभिन्न कुनामा बसोवास सुरु गरे ।

यिनी नेताले यस्तो खतरनाक भाषण दिएकोमा आफैँ लज्जित हुनुपर्ने हो । आफ्नो ज्ञानको सीमिततामाथि आफैँ घोत्लिनुपर्ने हो । तर लज्जित हुने नेता होइनन् यिनी किनकि यिनले आफ्नो नेतागिरीको दौरान भारतीय गोर्खा जातिको विरोधमा अनगिन्ती काम गरेका छन् । समयले यी सब जातिविरोधी कामलाई उजागर मात्रै नगरेर, भावी पुस्ताले धिक्कार्ने छन् ।

पाँचवटा प्रश्न राखौँ है त ? गोर्खा जातिलाई जातजातमा सिक्किम टुक्रा कसले पार्‌यो र पछि त्यही हावा सिक्किमदेखि बाहिर कसले बहायो ? के पश्चिम बंगालका मुख्यमन्त्रीले जातिगत बोर्ड बनाई गोर्खाहरूको गढ दार्जिलिङमा वीभत्स वातावरण जन्माउनुमा सिक्किमको हावाले प्रभाव पारेन होला ? भारतीय गोर्खाहरूका चिनारीको माग गोर्खाल्यान्डको एउटा प्रमुख हतियार दार्जिलिङ सिक्किमको राष्ट्रिय माग बन्द गर्ने प्रथालाई भारतको सर्वोच्च न्यायालयमा लडेको मुद्दामा करोडौँ खर्च गरी यसलाई गैरकानुनी घोषणा गर्नु कसले लगायो र पछि मागको यो दाहिने हात नै काटेपछि सहानुभूति देखाउँदै, सिक्किम विधान सभामा पुङ न पुच्छरको गोर्खाल्यान्डलाई सघाउने प्रस्ताव किन पास गर्‌यो ? त्यहाँको नेता भएको २२ वर्षमा भारत सरकार र कुनै उच्च आयोगलाई भारतीय गोर्खाहरूका चिनारी अस्तित्व र मागबारे कुन एउटा ठोस ज्ञापन दिएको छ, देखाउन सक्छ ?

सन् २००५ मा इन्डिया टुडेले गरेको दिल्लीको मुख्यमन्त्रीहरूको कन्क्लेभमा यिनी नेताले गोर्खाल्यान्डमाथि बोल्न किन मानेनन् ? सिक्किमबाट पठाएका गोर्खा नेपाली भाषा सांसदहरूले यिनी नेताले छत्रछायामा, छुट्टै राज्य त के भारतीय गोर्खाहरूले भोगेका पिरमर्का उत्पीडनमा किन प्रश्न उठाउँदैनन् र उठाएनन् ? फेरि त्यही सिक्किमबाटै गएकी सांसद सदस्यले कसरी नेपाली भाषा मान्यताको लागि लडिन् र तिनताकका नेपाली भाषी मुख्यमन्त्रीले कसरी भारतीय नेपाली राष्ट्रिय परिसंघ स्थापना गरेर गोर्खाहरूको निम्ति त्यतिविघ्न कार्यहरू गरे ? सन् २००३–२०१६ सम्म पनि भारतीय गोर्खा जातिमा रहेका तामाङ र लिम्बू जातका अनुसूचित जनजातिका सिक्किम विधानसभामा किन सिट आरक्षणको लागि यिनले लडेन र आज चारैतिर विरोध सुरु भएपछि किन लड्ने चासो देखाउँदैछ ? २००८ मा सिक्किम आएको डिलिमेटेसन कमिसनलाई यिनी नेताले के भनेर लट्पटाए ? अति नै भयानक र चिन्ताजनक यी कार्यले भारतीय गोर्खाहरूलाई सधैँ झक्झकाइरहनेछ ।

कालिम्पोङमा गोजुमुमोको जित भयो तर यो पार्टी र यसको मुद्दा देशमा धेरैपटक हार्‌यो । ... जित्ने सम्भावना नै छैन ।

तर फेरि जित्नु भनेको लड्डु बाँडेर कन्ट्रयाक्ट बाँडेर, सरकारले जनतालाई दिएको विकासको कोस आफू, भाइभतिजा, दलाल, संगिनीबीच बाँडचुँड गर्नु मात्रै होइन । जित्नु भनेको जाति, क्षेत्र विकासको लागि केही पाउनु हो, छुट्टै राज्य ल्याउनु हो । टक्कर दिनु हो । भूतको छाया भएर टक्कर दिन सक्तैन । विधान सभा र संसद्मा छायाको खेल हुँदैन, पैसाले जिताएको सदस्यको मोल हुँदैन । कहीँ न कहीँ, केही न केही कुरोमा झुक्याएर पठाएको सदस्यले आफ्नो रङ देखाइदिइहाल्छ । र नै देशमा जित्नुपर्छ, कालिम्पोङमा होइन । समुद्रमा पौडी खेल्नु पर्छ, खोल्सामा होइन ।


Via: Annapurna Post

 
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