Gorkhaland demand: From street protests to silent rallies, photos capture the mood in Darjeeling

Gorkhaland demand: From street protests to silent rallies, photos capture the mood in Darjeeling

The hills of Darjeeling and Kalimpong in West Bengal have been simmered for almost three weeks.

The riots began in early June after Mamata Banerjee-led the West Bengal government, said the Bengali language is necessarily taught in schools across the state. The measure has found strong resistance in the districts of Darjeeling and Kalimpong, where they live Gorkha language mainly from Nepal.

But the language proposed was only the most recent flashpoint for resentment that had spread over decades and that protests refused to die even after Prime Minister Banerjee has said that the rule does not apply to districts of the hill.

The agitation becomes a widespread movement demanding a separate state of Gorkhaland – a movement that has gained strength in the 1980s and has appeared intermittently since – led by the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha. From June 12, Gorkha Janmukti Morcha, Bimal Gurung, began an indefinite strike in Darjeeling, which entered its ninth day, on Tuesday. The trial brought normal life to a standstill and took tourists out of the hillside.

Several violent incidents have been reported in Darjeeling and Kalimpong in the last two weeks, as protesters have set cars on fire and clashed with security guards. Gorkha Janmukti Morcha alleged that three of his followers were killed after security personnel opened fire on demonstrators on June 17. The state government responded to protests over the increased deployment of the armed and paramilitary forces in the state and The imposition of an Internet shutdown.

The movement for the creation of Gorkhaland peaked between 1986 and 1988 under the Gorkhaland National Liberation Front, led by Subhash Ghising, and according to various estimates, more than 1 000 people died during riots and police repression.

“He was eight years old when the uniformed combat people came to our door, suddenly we heard a shot, he ran to see my father lying in a pool of blood, gasping,” A Mukhia said Nereo, whose father David Mukhia died in 1986. “Whatever benefits or facilities the government gives, the wound is still there and will be replaced once we have our land.” Although the government makes us a boring year at this time, agitation will strengthen day by day … I believe that people who are in the vanguard give up under no circumstances.

Prabhat Ghisingh, a Gorkhaland activist, also loses a connection with the 1986 violence.

“I was 10 or 12 when security personnel killed my aunt, an old person,” he said. “He was shot in the head … Now we have reached the state where we are strong with our support for a separate state Gorkhaland.”

Although the violent demonstrations and parliaments between the Center, the State, and the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha have grabbed the headlines, away, several independent and non-violent rallies and marches were also carried out in some parts of Darjeeling and Kalimpong then the movements of the People arise in response to the request of a separate Gorkhaland and the repression of the demonstrators.

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