Putting past behind, Trinamool & Gorkha Jan Mukti Morcha join hand for Panchayat polls

Mamata Banerjee  Gorkha Territorial Administration  Binay Tamang
In a huge turnaround, the Gorkha Jan Mukti Morcha (GJMM) has decided to support the All India Trinamool Congress in the upcoming Panchayat elections in Alpurduar and Jalpaiguri in West Bengal.

Binoy Tamang, GJMM leader said “We have decided to go for an electoral alliance with the Trinamool Congress in the Dooars region in the upcoming Panchayat elections. We will support the AITC in those GP, Panchyat Samiti and Zilla Parishad where they have put up candidates. In some areas where AITC cannot provide candidates, GJMM candidates will fight as independent candidates and will support AITC.”

According to GJMM spokesperson Rohit Sharma, this has been done to restore peace in the Darjeeling hills. He said that they support the government's initiative to usher in development and restore peace in the hills.

Sources in the GJMM said that a four-member team will be visiting Dooars next week and speak to the AITC.

The Kamtapur Progressive Party and Adivasi Vikash Parishad have also given a call to support AITC in the Dooars region in the upcoming Panchayat election.

Sourav Chakraborty, AITC's Zilla Sabhapati at Jalpiaguri, said “ We have spoken with GJMM in this regard and we have come to an electoral understanding. However, the final discussions will take place next week. It was decided that wherever we are unable to put up a candidate, GJMM will field candidates. They can fight as independents and support us.”

According to Chakraborty, there are various Gorkha communities staying in the Dooars region and if an electoral alliance is formed with GJMM, it will benefit the AITC.

The GJMM has got a strong foothold in the tea gardens of Bagrakot, Madarihat, Birpara, Jaigaon, Kalchini and Chamurchi. In the last Panchayat elections, GJMM backed nominees had won from these seats.

According to Sharma, the party will take action against those GJMM leaders who are involved in anti-party activities and are supporting BJP candidates. Already they have received reports that GJMM leader Madhukar Thapa, a close aide of Bimal Gurung, extended his support to the BJP candidate and the party has decided to take action against the leader.

Meanwhile the Jan Andolon Party (JAP) and Communist Party Revolutionist Marxist (CPRM), demanded that rural polls should be held in Darjeeling and Kalimpong.

JAP leader Yusuf Simick said, “We demand amendment of the 243(M) of the West Bengal Panchayat Act where there is no provision to hold rural elections in Darjeeling and Kalimpong. We will urge the state government to consider our demand.”


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