Come And Raid My House, I'm Right Here: GJM Chief Bimal Gurung

The situation in the Darjeeling hills is likely to worsen over the next few days as the GJM says the agitation will intensify and talks will happen only on a single point agenda - creation of Gorkhaland.

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Protests erupted in Darjeeling last week after Bimal Gurung's home was raided by security forces

Darjeeling:  Gorkha Janmukti Morcha chief Bimal Gurung has challenged the security forces to come and raid his home and office after announcing that there would be no relaxation in the indefinite strike that his party has called in the Darjeeling hills after three men died of bullet injuries on June 17 during protests in the town. The protests had erupted after Mr Gurung's home was raided by security forces. 

At a press conference, the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) chief cautioned West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee against using force to clamp down on protests in support of creating a separate state of Gorkhaland. 

Referring to Ms Banerjee's government's tackling of the situation created by Maoist leader Kishenji in South Bengal, "I am not Kishenji. I am right here. Let the police come and raid this place." Kishenji was shot and killed in an encounter by security forces in November 2011.

The situation in the Darjeeling hills is likely to worsen over the next few days as the GJM says the agitation will intensify and talks will happen only on a single point agenda - creation of Gorkhaland. The only relief, an estimated 5,000 students were evacuated today as Darjeeling's boarding schools were asked to send students home. 

For the children it's an extended holiday but parents and school authorities are worried about the future. At the crack of dawn, students of the Darjeeling schools left for their homes as the queen of the hills prepared for an indefinite shutdown and a showdown with the state over Gorkhaland. 

"We are worried about the teachers who are staying back here," a student of Mount Hermon School told NDTV. 

"I had lots of fun with my friends. I am going in the school bus. I am feeling nice," added a primary school student, unaware of the crisis that the hill town was facing. Headmaster Partho Dey said, "We are scheduled to open on the 4th and resume classes on the 6th. In this period let's see how things go on and then we will decide."

So far, there has been no word from the state or centre on when there will be talks to resolve the issue. The Morcha says with all members having resigned the Gorkha Territorial Administration no longer exists.

Their demand is to book officials responsible for the firing and announce the creation of Gorkhaland immediately.

Mr Gurung and his wife have been booked by the Darjeeling Police on murder charges after last week's violence. "We did not open fire. Police opened fire and three of our boys were martyred. The DM, SP and the Government of West Bengal have to take responsibility for it. We will not rest and fight till our last breath to get Gorkhaland," Mr Gurung added. 

Along with an intensifying political agitation, Darjeeling could soon be staring at an administrative crisis as all members of the Gorkha Territorial Administrstion resigned and with senior BJP lawmaker SS Ahluwalia representing the hills, the centre needs to step in immediately to initiate talks and resolve the crisis.

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