Protests in Siliguri over death of two GJM members

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Siliguri, Feb 13 (ANI): The recent killing of two Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) supporters triggered off a protest in West Bengal's Siliguri District.

The enraged GJM activists later called for an indefinite shutdown in the wake of the killings, and held massive protests across the region on Saturday.

The GJM members were killed when the security personnel opened fire to disperse a rally in West Bengal's Doars region on February 8.

Rattled by the protests, Vijay Madan, the special interlocutor appointed by the Centre on the Gorkhaland row, met GJM General Secretary Roshan Giri on Saturday.

According to media reports, Giri and Madan discussed a variety of issues pertaining to the row in their meeting, seeking a mutually agreeable settlement.

Giri and Madan also met locals to gauge their views on the row and to hear their grievances.

Demanding justice for the killings, Giri also urged the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to investigate the incident.

"The interlocutor came and we interacted with him for quite some time over the issue. We told the interlocutor how the police was conspiring against us and briefed him on everything that has happened since February 5. We want justice for the incident that took place on February 8," Giri told reporters.

"We demand a CBI probe into the case. We want justice; we do not want the blood shed by our activists to go in vain. We have also reiterated our stand on the demand for Gorkhaland. We want the Terai and Dooars region to be included in this," he added.

Meanwhile, Madan also met senior police officials, administrators and bureaucrats of the strife-ridden province to gain an insight into the row.

The special interlocutor maintained the government would take all possible measures to peacefully resolve the issue.

"We want a speedy and peaceful settlement of the issue. We do not want any bloodshed or violence, and we want peace to prevail. People should be able to lead normal lives here. That is all," said Madan.

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.

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 councils legislative powers.

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 Gorkha population in West Bengal estimated to be around a million has been demanding a separate state. (ANI)

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