Bharati sets Sunday deadline for fast onto death stir, DF prepares Sunday address

Darjeeling June 11: If the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) leaders are a worried lot at present in the hills, the opposition (read anti-GJM outfits), specifically AIGL, are not far behind. Apprehensive of CBI taking its time to arrest top rung GJM leaders despite warrant being issued, Bharati Tamang, the AIGL president has decided to sit on a fast onto death stir from Sunday.
Political forum–'Democratic Front' in Darjeeling
Political forum–'Democratic Front' in Darjeeling
Twenty-three GJM leaders of high profile has been charge sheeted by the CBI on the Madan Tamang murder case. A Calcutta city court has already issued warrant of arrest for the 23 leaders including Bimal Gurung, the GJM chief. However, with GJM filing anticipatory bail at the Calcutta High court and hearing for the same pending because of cease work for three days, the party which rules the GTA is a worried lot.

The CBI whatsoever has not arrested anyone so far and things have no gone well with the AIGL. “The fast onto death is a last resort for me. The CBI is only dillydallying arrest,” Tamang told journalists on Thursday. Bharati Tamang is also the widow of slain leader Madan Tamang.
Tamang had been murdered on May 21, 2010 under broad daylight at Clubside in Darjeeling while overseeing preparation for a public address that he was to make on the very day.

Bharati’s fast onto death is expected to be followed by a public meeting on Sunday to be organized by the Democratic Front (DF). The DF is a conglomeration of four anti-GJM hill parties formed with an aim to return democracy in the hills. The conglomerate also vouches to work for seeking justice in the Madan Tamang murder case.  The DF comprises of the AIGL, Communist Party of Revolutionary Marxist, Gorkha National Liberation Front and the Sikkim Darjeeling Merger Forum.

“Permission has been applied for the meet on Sunday. We have also put up posters to sensitize the mass in the hills,” said Shankar hang Subba, the spokesperson for DF.

CPIM withdrawal 

Ironically, days after the formation of the conglomerate the CPIM has withdrawn itself from the DF. The CPIM top leadership in the district feels that the DF should also take up other issues. “The Madan Tamang murder is a sub-judice matter and we find no point is seeking justice through a forum seems redundant. So we withdrew,” said Saman Pathak, a CPIM district secretariat member.

The DF countered saying that the CPIM’s decision to step back has many reasons. “The CPIM was heading the Government when Madan Tamang was murdered. The role of the then West Bengal Government on this issue is murky. Why were there no adequate security arrangements despite anticipation of trouble? How did Nickol Tamang, supposed to be the mastermind of the murder, disappear from the custody of the CID?” said Pratap Khati, the ABGL secretary.

Source: The Himalayan Mirror

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