Darjeeling bracing for peaceful settlement: Bimal Gurung

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Darjeeling, Nov 4 (ANI): Expressing satisfaction over his meeting with Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram earlier this week, Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) chief Bimal Gurung believes all contentious issues relating to the formation of an interim Darjeeling Hills Gorkha authority would be resolved soon.

"We have presented all issues before the Home Minister and he is sorting it out. We have told the Home Minister to solve the issue as soon as possible," said Gurung.

The tripartite talks pertained to the setting up of a regional authority before the next round of political discussions.

The four issues obstructing the interim authority are territorial jurisdiction, its authority to manage the regional tea gardens, the selection of its members and a description of the council's legislative powers.

A renewed demand for a separate Gorkhaland region, which would include Darjeeling and some contiguous areas of Jalpaiguri District, has created fresh turmoil over the past few months.

At the fifth round of tripartite talks in New Delhi, the GJM had agreed to the constitution of an interim council by 2011 prior to the creation of a separate state.

The Gorkhas are demanding a separate state to protect their culture and heritage.

The Gorkha population in West Bengal is estimated to be around a million. (ANI)

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