However, Gorkha students in Kolkata feel that blockades won't help strengthen Gorkhaland movement and on the contrary would only increase distance towards Gurung.
"We had faced a lot of problems during the last spate of bandhs in the hills. But everyone participated without protesting with hope that the bandhs would force Centre and Bengal government to consider our demand for separate statehood. However, Mamata Banerjee played the ethnic cards and divided the Gorkhaland movement. Now, again if bandhs are called, our people will only suffer not achieve anything," said Vandana Pradhan, a 2nd year student of commerce.
|Gurung calls for bandh in Darjeeling hills|
"Durga Puja is just a fortnight away. Bengali tourists visit the hills in large numbers during this period. Bandhs will not only affect trade and tourism in Darjeeling Hills but also in Sikkim," said Rajesh Chhetri, an arts student and a native of Kurseong.
Some students feel Mamata's carefully planned social engineering coupled with development claims has snuffed the Gorkhaland momentum halt. "The recent annoucement of Kalimpong district is a long pending demand and is a shot in the arm on Jan Andolan Party (JAP), which has been demanding it. As we know JAP leader Harka Bahadur Chetri is an associate of Mamata now. These careful announcements are further isolating the GJM. Hence, this bandh call to show their presence," said Tsering, a final year commerce student and a native of Kalimpong.
Mamata Banerjee on Friday, during a programme in the hills warned against the bandh call given by Bimal Gurung. "We won't let any bandhs happen in the hills. Bandhs won't aid in development of the hills," she had said while leaving space for talks with Gurung. "If you have any issues, we can talk," she said.