Thousands of Gorkhas march from Rajghat to Jantar Mantar

Posted on by iSikkim | Category: Politics Slider Post | 542 views | 1 Comment

When was the last time you went to participate in a political rally with your entire family?

May be you would have read about the entire family working together for a political cause in books and heard of late in Egypt and Tunisia. But for those demanding Gorkhaland, it comes naturally. Since, for Gorkhas, their identity itself is at stake.

That’s happened for the last 14 days in Delhi, that’s happening in Darjeeling and Kalimpong for months now, and that is going to happen for, may be years in the times to come.

As the Gorkhas’ agitation in Delhi demanding Gorkhaland enters day 15, it has only become more widespread and determined. On Sunday, March 13, 2011 more than a thousand strong Gorkhas, from Delhi, UP, Haryana, Uttarakhand, Darjeeling, Sikkim and as far as Manipur, Nagaland and Assam, participated in the 7 km march from Rajghat to Jantar Mantar. Senior BJP leader and the current Loksabh MP from Darjeeling Jaswant Singh, wife of GJM President Bimal Gurung and Gorkha Janmukti Nari Morcha President Asha Gurung, Delhi Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) leader Uttam Chhetri and Ex MP and President of Bharatiya Gorkha Parisangh Dil Kumari Bhandari were present during the march.

Gorkhas on the march from Rajghat to Jantar Mantar

Gorkhas on the march route from Rajghat to Jantar Mantar

The entire leadership of GJM Delhi including media secretary Ranjan Sharma, GJM Youth wing’s Pankaj Chhetri, Robin Pradhan and Delhi GJM Nari Morcha’s Anu Das apart from others actively participated in mobilizing people for the demonstration.

Today’s march saw huge participation from young Gorkha boys and girls who work in call centers, restaurants and beauty parlors. “For them Sunday doesn’t mean a holiday. Many of them who are here will have to forego a day’s salary. Loss of a day’s earnings is more painful for those whose salary is less”, said Pankaj Chhetri who himself works in a call center. “In a world where money is everything for many of us, they all have come. Many of my friends jeer at me for all this but this is a struggle of our identity.”

After the march reached Jantar Mantar, GJM leaders in their speech repeated their demand for Gorkhaland and CBI enquiry into Sipchu killings. Senior GJM Delhi leader Uttam Chhetri stressed on the need for Gorkhas to keep the struggle on. In his fiery 18 minute speech Mr. Chhetri called Gorkhas to remain united. Uttarakhand Gorkha Janmukti Morcha General Secretary Aashu Lama said in her speech that Gorkhas won’t let Jaswant Singh until their demand for Gorkhaland is fulfilled.

Jaswant Singh delivering his speech. On the left is senior GJM Delhi leader Uttam Chhetri

Jaswant Singh delivering his speech. On his right is senior GJM Delhi leader Uttam Chhetri

The former Defense Minister and one of the most successful External Affairs Ministers of India, Jaswant Singh said that the demand for Gorkhaland is a just demand and he would serve the cause as long as he lives. When asked that how have things changed since when he first went to Gorkhaland in 1962 as an army officer, Mr. Singh said, “I find a terrible deterioration between 1962 and now. I do charge the Left Front for deliberately neglecting the hill areas of Darjeeling. It is a great pity and a great regret. I believe it’s an act of deliberate omission on the part of Bengal government.”

Related story:
GJM chief pays courtesy visit to Sikkim CM
We are not safe in Bengal: Gorkha leader
Gorkhas call for sacrifice



  • Dushyant

    Somehow I find the whole process futile. On 5 March, I was in Delhi and witnessed a rally towards Jantar Mantar of people from Gwalior and I am sure there were not less than 10 lakh people in the rally. The line was almost 5 Km long. Surprisingly, I hardly heard or read about the rally in any national newspaper or media.
    GJM or the Gorkhas have to do more to get their voices heard in the Parliament.

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