Centre assures Bengal additional forces to tackle violence

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New Delhi, Feb 8 (PTI) The Centre today assured WestBengal government that it will provide additional securityforces to deal with the violence which has erupted following aprotest by Gorkha Janmukti Morcha activists.

Home Secretary Gopal K Pillai said the Centre has alreadysent 300 paramilitary personnel and 100 women security guardsto assist the state police forces to tackle the situation inJalpaiguri and Darjeeling.

"We have asked the state government to look into thematter. (Central) Forces are available in West Midnaporedistrict and if need some more could be sent from there," hetold reporters here.

Two persons were killed when police opened fire to stopGJM supporters from taking out a march in Jalpaiguri districtviolating prohibitory orders, triggering unrest in Darjeelinghills where government vehicles and offices were set on fireby GJM workers.

Clashes erupted when the police dismantled illegaltemporary camps of the GJM built near Shipchu inside a reserveforest.

The GJM is currently negotiating with the government onthe possibility of setting up of a Darjeeling RegionalAuthority comprising the districts of Darjeeling and adjoiningareas but no decision has been taken.

However, it was not clear whether the interim authoritywould be set up before the West Bengal Assembly elections afew months away.

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