Free Press Journal

GJM takes out protest march, internet remains suspended


Darjeeling : Security forces patrolled the streets in the hills and Internet services remained suspended for the second day on Monday as Gorkha Janmukti Morcha supporters held protest march here demanding Gorkhaland and burnt effigies of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee.

Carrying black flags, protesters, especially the youth, marched on the streets of Chowkbazar area shouting slogans against the state government and the chief minister.

Protesters also burnt effigies of Banerjee and vowed to continue their fight for Gorkhaland.

“Three of our activists were killed. We are ready to give our lives but will not stop protesting till we get Gorkhaland,” Sirish Pradhan, a GJM worker, said. Several small processions were taken out by GJM activists in various parts of Darjeeling.

According to police sources, the step was taken to stop GJM activists from using the social media to spread “provocative posts”.

Security forces patrolled the streets as the situation remained tense on the fifth day of GJM-sponsored indefinite shutdown.

“The situation is still very tense. Since morning there has been no incident of violence. But we are on high alert and are prepared for any eventuality,” said a senior police officer.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee urged all concerned parties and stakeholders to attend an all-party meeting called by the state government in Siliguri on June 22 on the prevailing situation in Darjeeling.

She urged the people to maintain peace and said, “Violence cannot be a solution to any problem and only talks can solve it”. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh had appealed to the protesters on Sunday not to resort to violence and instead, hold dialogue to resolve any issue.