Gorkhaland agitation trickles down to Bengaluru, massive demonstration held

| Updated: Jun 21, 2017 00:46 IST

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India] June 20 (ANI): Amidst a burgeoning political crisis in Darjeeling, a major demonstration was held in Bengaluru city on Tuesday in support of Gorkha Janmukti Morcha's (GJM) demand for Gorkhaland. Speaking to ANI, a protestor Rahul said, "This protest is all about identity, the people are in trouble. We wish to protest all over India and hope that our demand is provided. We stand here as a family and demand for Gorkhaland". Another protestor, Ramesh Rai accused West Bengal Mamata Banerjee of hurting their brother and sisters in Darjeeling. "We want justice and we demand Gorkhaland. It is our birth right and we should have it! Gorkhaland is a long pending demand and we just wish that this demand is fulfilled. West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is hurting our brother and sisters there so we want peace and that can only come if we get our land- 'Gorkhaland'," Rai told ANI. Even as the indefinite strike called by GJM entered into its eighth day, Mamata Banerjee yesterday left for her Netherlands visit. Mamata, who left to address a United Nations meet, said her ministers were monitoring the situation in violence-hit Darjeeling. "Violent protests won't be tolerated. My ministers are monitoring the situation," she told ANI at Kolkata airport. Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday said he has spoken to Mamata over the law and order situation in Darjeeling. Thirty-six policemen were injured on Saturday in clashes with the GJM supporters. The GJM announced an indefinite strike encompassing Darjeeling and Kalimpong districts and the Dooars protesting against Mamata Banerjee's decision to make Bengali language compulsory in state-run schools. The strike was called even after the Chief Minister assured that the new rule would not be imposed in the hill districts. The protestors are also asking for a separate Gorkhaland, a long pending demand of the people of the hills. Earlier in the day, Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) chief Bimal Gurung claimed that the West Bengal Police are illegally entering their supporters' houses and torturing them and also accused them of killing two of his supporters. He said that GJM would further strengthen their agitation. Mamata Banerjee tore into the GJM supporters and said that they aren't listening to the court, even after it had passed an order citing the bandh was "illegal." Rajnath Singh reviewed the security situation in West Bengal's Darjeeling by sending more troops to help restore normalcy as the state government has not yet submitted its report on the situation. (ANI)