Whiff of ‘change’ in the air in hills

Binay Tamang GTA Chief
In Darjeeling where acceptable political culture was intolerance of “opposition” and rivals’ voices, ideals and ideas getting cha inchi (six inches) little, some promises are being made.
Cha inchi or “six inches down” was the supposedly the size of a head in Darjeeling’s politics. It essentially meant that if a person’s head was severed for his opposition, it would only mean, six inches down.
Severed heads of journalists, opposition politicians and others had been hung in the streets of the Darjeeling hills.
This is a fact almost all hill people are aware of.
The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha, which is now headed by Binay Tamang, has promised to bring about a change in the political culture of the hills.
Suraj Sharma, the spokesman for the Morcha, said on Wednesday: “We have floated an organisation christened Jan Sewak Sansta. This is the social wing (of the Morcha).”
He added that the stress was on “bringing about a change in the political culture of the region.”
The Sansta (organisation) is talking flowers.
“On November 4 and 5, we (the Jan Sewak Sansta) will be organising a show where farmers can come and sell flowers. Registrations will start from tomorrow (Thursday) and anyone can participate in it. Space will be allotted on the first come, first served basis,” said Sharma.
The “first come, first served” narrative was to stress the fact that the Sansta would be politically neutral.
Political interference in social events is a welcome change, observers believe.
This is because the hills have had a history of political interference at every level.
So much so that during one of the previous Gorkhalan movements, social boycott was an accepted theme.
The Morcha is now trying to bring about a change. The observers said “it is to be seen if real changes do really come”.
“We want to promote local farmers. We want to be change,” said Sharma.
Time, they say, is the biggest judge.

The Telegraph
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In Darjeeling where acceptable political culture was intolerance of “opposition” and rivals’ voices, ideals and ideas getting cha inchi (six inches) little, some promises are being made.

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