Security personnel clash with Gorkha Janmukti Morcha activists in Darjeeling. (File)
The West Bengal government, in a report sent to the union Home Ministry on June 17, listed possible involvement of Northeast terrorists as among the reasons for the violence in Darjeeling
, people familiar with the matter said. The report said violence started after the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha or GJM organised a protest meeting on June 5.
The situation worsened on June 8 after three processions taken out by GJM activists 100 metres away from the governor's house in Darjeeling turned violent. The GJM is demanding a separate state of Gorkhaland.
Home Ministry sources, quoting the contents of the report, said election to the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration or GTA, which includes Darjeeling and neighbouring areas, could also be a reason behind the violence.
The GJM headed by Bimal Gurung dominates the GTA. In 2012, the GJM secured all the 45 seats -- 22 in Darjeeling sub-division, 10 in Kurseong and 13 in Kalimpong -- under the GTA.
Referring to recovery of arms and cash, the report suggested involvement of terrorist groups from the Northeast behind the violence in Darjeeling, the sources said. The West Bengal government's report, which was sent to the Home Ministry on June 17, mentions the status as on June 13. It mainly gives details the way protests were carried out, the sources said.
In all, 24 cases have been registered by police, and 49 security personnel have been injured in the violence, the sources added. The situation is tense but under control
, they said.
Both union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Home Secretary Rajiv Mehrishi have spoken to the state administration over the issue.
Eleven companies of security forces are stationed in the region. Of them, one is an all-women company.
Darjeeling had seen a violent movement for a separate Gorkhaland in the mid-1980s under Subhash Ghisingh. The movement ended with the establishment of a semi-autonomous administrative body in 1988 called Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC), which was headed by Ghisingh.
As Ghisingh's influence waned, the GJM launched another movement for a separate state of Gorkhaland. In 2011, the GJM signed an agreement with the state and central governments and another semi-autonomous administrative unit, GTA, was born, replacing the DGHC.