LF, Congress against creation of separate state Gorkhaland

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Kolkata/Siliguri, Jun 14 (UNI) The Left Front (LF) as well as the Congress today unanimously reiterated their firm stand against the creation of a separate state Gorkhaland, stating that the division of West Bengal could not be allowed under any circumstance.

Throwing their weight behind Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, all the Left Front constituents - the CPI, FB and RSP - reached a consensus that the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) could not be invited for June 17 all-party meet.

After an emergent Front meeting, called to assess the Darjeeling situation, Left Front Chairman Biman Bose said, ''All the Front constituents have agreed that the GJM cannot be called for the June 17 all-party meet since it is not a recognised party. Only the recognised political parties will participate in the meet.

Regarding the GJM's turning down the invitation for the June 18 meet, the Chief Minister said in the meeting that it was not the end of the road and discussion might take place later on, Mr Bose informed.

Meanwhile, rejecting the statehood demand for Darjeeling, the Congress said it would participate in the proposed all-party meeting, called by the Chief Minister Buddhadeb to find a solution to the problem.

''In no way do we want division of Bengal. If necessary, the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC) can be given more power and funds,'' Pradesh Congress Committee president Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi said.

Stressing that the problem could be solved only through proper dialogues, Mr Dasmunsi said he had written to the Chief Minister confirming his participation in the June 17 meeting.

He, however, opined that the presence of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM), which had not been invited in the proposed meet, was necessary.

In reply to a question on the likely non-participation of the Trinamool Congress in the all-party meeting, Mr Dasmunsi said every political party in Bengal should attend it.

''I would not comment on what Mamata Banerjee says, but all parties should participate in the all-party meeting,'' he said.

Yesterday, Ms Banerjee said her party would not participate in the proposed meeting if the GJM was not invited.

External Affairs Minister and senior Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee also asserted that there was no question of creating a separate Gorkhaland carving out of Bengal, but the Centre was ready for talks with the GJM.

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