Kolkata : A vacation bench of the Calcutta High Court comprising Justice Harish Tandon and Justice Debangsu Basak on Tuesday passed an interim order asking the Union government not to withdraw central security forces from the trouble-hit Darjeeling till October 27.
The court has asked the Centre to file an affidavit on the matter by October 23 and also told the West Bengal government to submit its reply on October 26.
Earlier, the Union Home Ministry had decided to withdraw seven companies of central security forces from Darjeeling to deploy them in other states for conducting Assembly elections.
The West Bengal government challenged the move in the court. The state government said that fifteen companies of central security forces who have been deployed in the region to maintain law and order situation in Darjeeling should not be withdrawn.
The court also observed that when the state government has been trying to restore normalcy in the region, the central security forces should not be withdrawn.
The state government had vehemently criticized the decision of the Union Home Ministry as a young police sub-inspector was gunned down this week during an attack allegedly by the supporters of Gorkha Janmukti Morch president Bimal Gurung who has been booked under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
On Monday West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had expressed her displeasure about the decision taken by the Union Home Ministry to withdraw seven company of central force from Darjeeling. She also wrote to the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to reconsider the decision. She also alleged that the Union Government had taken the decision on political grounds as the ruling Trinamool Congress have been opposing the BJP.
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee welcomed the decision of the Calcutta High Court. Reacting to the decision, state BJP president Dilip Ghosh said that the state director general of police Surajit Kar Purkayastha had claimed on Monday while visiting Darjeeling that normalcy has restored in the region. He said that the Union government might have taken the decision considering the claim of the state government.