GJM supporters torch police station in Kalimpong after raids at Bimal Gurung's office

Police seized weapons such as knives, machetes, sickles and arrows from GJM office
The West Bengal police today raided the office of Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) chief Bimal Gurung's office in Darjeeling and seized weapons such as knives, machetes, sickles and arrows.
The police raid at Gurung's office triggered a violent protest by GJM supporters who torched a police station in Kalimpong.
The police also arrested GJM leader Karuna Gaurung from Kursiong as agitation over demands for a separate Gorkhaland intensified in hilly parts of West Bengal.

A huge contingent of West Bengal police including its Counter-Insurgency Force (CIF), led by Darjeeling Superintendent of Police Akhilesh Chaturvedi broke open the gates of Gurung's office at Patlaybas area.

Though Gurung was himself not present at the premises, there were a few women GJM cadres guarding the office. In an operation that lasted for half hour, police recovered a huge cache of sharp weapons like bow and arrows, axes, khukuris, spades, knives etc. A country made fire arm and cash was also recovered.

Condemning the police crackdown, GJM leader Binay Tamang said bows and arrows are used in traditional tribal archery.

"We are tribals, about to hold our traditional archery competition. They showed our traditional equipments as weapons. This is why we need Gorkhaland, our rights, our culture, our heritage, our traditions...nothing is respected," Tamang said.

Meanwhile, in protest against the police crackdown the GJM has called for total shutdown of Darjeeling hills for an indefinite period.

The police action came after Gurung announced that the agitation for a separate Gorkhaland will continue and asked tourists to avoid visiting Darjeeling. "It is not only a matter of tourists. They should try and avoid Darjeeling. Our agitation will go on. Let CRPF and Army men be deployed," Gurung said in a statement.

Source: http://indiatoday.intoday.in

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