Bandh from 1800 hours today, relay hunger strike from tomorrow

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Darjeeling/Siliguri, Jun 16 (UNI) The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM), led by its president Bimal Gurung, will go to New Delhi during the end of June to meet Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, AICC chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Home Minister Shivraj Patil, Leader of the Opposition L K Advani and several other Central leaders to put forth their demand of a separate state Gorkhaland.

Informing this to newspersons here today, the GJM president said they will inform the Central leaders about the prevailing situation in the Hills.

Mr Gurung also demanded immediate arrest of the miscreants responsible for the violence in Siliguri and Dooars as well as West Bengal Urban Development Minister Ashok Bhattacharya, alleging that the minister was behind the unrest.

''Mr Bhattacharya is the mastermind behind all the violence. He is also instigating the CPI(M) cadres and Amra Bangali and Jan Jagran activists to commit atrocities and harass the GJM supporters engaged in peaceful movements to demand Gorkhaland,'' Mr Gurung stated.

He also reiterated the GJM's decision of not attending the June 18 meeting, convened by Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, and demanded a tripartite meeting comprising the Centre, state government and the GJM.

Meanwhile, the GJM yesterday gave fresh indefinite bandh call in Darjeeling hills from 1800 hours today.

GJM publicity secretary Benoy Tamang told UNI that the decision to sponsor indefinite strike and intensify the statehood demand was taken here yesterday at a party meeting chaired by president Bimal Gurung.

The GJM had called indefinite bandh on June 9, but relaxed the strike for 60 hours from Wednesday evening to facilitate exodus of tourists from the hills.

The relaxation was further extended till this evening, Mr Tamang said.

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