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We Want Gorkhaland, Won't Ally With TMC, Says GNLF

Sujit Nath |

Updated: June 14, 2017, 2:02 PM IST
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We Want Gorkhaland, Won't Ally With TMC, Says GNLF
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. (Photo: PTI)
Kolkata: Amidst fear of a decreasing voter base, Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) on Wednesday said that there was no future in allying with the Trinamool Congress in the Hills.

Speaking exclusively to News18, GNLF, Spokesperson, Neeraj Zimba Tamang said, “There is a strong feeling among the people for a separate Gorkhaland and we are being branded as a party that is against it. We lost a huge vote share in the municipal election. We have decided to stay away from the TMC as there is no feasibility and no common objective.”

“Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is against Gorkhaland but we want a separate state. Our founder Subhash Ghisingh formed GNLF only to take the Gorkhaland movement forward and now it’s time for all of us to join hand for the movement,” he added.

When quizzed on Gorkha Janmukti Morcha’s (GJM) alliance with Bharitya Janata Party (BJP), Tamang said that there was very little that the state unit of the saffron party could do about the demand.

“But, at the central level, we’ve been promised a separate land. That is what matters,” he added.

GJM has come out in support of GNLF, with general secretary Roshan Giri telling News18 that their movement will now gain momentum. “This is a fight for our identity and those who don’t support it will be considered traitors,” he added.

TMC, however, is undeterred by the development. Reacting to GNLF’s sudden shift in its political stand, TMC (Hills) Spokesperson Binny Sharma said, “With due respect to the GNLF leadership, we are least bothered about their new political stand. TMC is strong enough to fight alone in the Hills. The GNLF contested from two seats (ward number 1 and 6) in the municipal polls and lost. This shows the kind political command they have among the people in the hills.”

“We are not going to support a separate state of Gorkhaland,” he added.

This is not the first time that GNLF has hit out at TMC. Soon after TMC’s landslide victory in Mirik and a few other seats in the Hills, the party due ire from GNLF for not appreciating the latter. In post on social media, he said, “Beloved Didi @MamataOfficial don't u think your alliance partner GNLF at least deserves an acknowledgement for the Election Victory in Mirik?”

Tamang took to Facebook also, and in a subtle attack against Mamata, for making Bangla compulsory in schools including the Hills, said, “If you really think what people 'eat' is their fundamental right…then why do some leaders unnecessarily and mindlessly force-feed what language students need to study in schools as their third language?
First Published: June 14, 2017, 2:02 PM IST
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