Lama backs Gurung’s decision to quit

The Statesman
Siliguri, 1 August -Noted academic from the Darjeeling Hills and former Vice-Chancellor of Sikkim University, Prof Mahendra P Lama, who expressed his desire to contest the general elections of 2014 from the Darjeeling constituency, lauded the GJMM president Mr Bimal Gurung’s decision to step down from the post in the GTA to plunge headlong in the movement for Gorkhaland.
In a written press release, Prof Lama, who is presently the pro Vice-Chancellor of Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), Delhi, said: “We must appreciate Mr Bimal Gurung’s decision. He has been leading the movement for the separate state for the past six years and he knows the complexities involved in the negotiation process.”
Paying tribute to the other leaders from the Hills, Ratanlal Brahmin, Dambar Singh Gurung, Subash Ghising, Madan Tamang, Ananda Pathak, R B Rai and others for their contribution for the development of the Hills, he said: “All of them played monumental roles.”
“After the formation of Telangana, it is our turn to have our own separate state. This is the aspiration of our people in the Hills and the plains of Darjeeling district and the Dooars,” the release said.
Prof Lama added: “A separate state in this region is going to be a reality and GJMM with a strong support base, needs to formulate strategies methodically.”
He suggested all the political parties and socio-cultural organisations from the Hills and the plains should be brought on board to encourage the ongoing movement for Gorkhaland.
A strong team should come up in Kolkata and Delhi to take the collective aspirations of the people to the Parliament and the Assembly, he wrote, adding that the need of the hour is to formulate a clear roadmap to achieve the goal.
He further said the movement requires a comprehensive and a long-term vision to take things forward.”West Bengal will benefit from the formation of the new state. The Telangana experience shows ultimately it is Delhi which decides the creation of a new state,” he added.

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