Trinamul no to Morcha on hung boards

The Telegraph

Aug. 4: Trinamul Congress leaders in Jalpaiguri district today said the party would not forge an alliance with any outfit that demands Gorkhaland and the inclusion of Terai and Dooars in it or the GTA.

In 15 panchayats that are hung in the Dooars, the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha-Jharkhand Mukti Morcha alliance and Trinamul are in a position to form boards together.

“Before the polls we had thought about the prospect of joining hands and forming boards in the panchayats, panchayat samitis and even zilla parishads,” said Chandan Bhowmik, the Jalpaiguri district Trinamul president.

“Now that the situation has changed in the hills, we are not ready to tie up with any party, especially the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha in case they resume Gorkhaland movement in the Dooars or reiterate the demand to include the Dooars and Terai in it (proposed state) or the GTA,” Bhowmik said.

“There is no problem in joining hands with the JMM separately but the party will have to declare that it will not raise these demands (of statehood and the inclusion of the Dooars in the GTA). If, after forming the boards, they raise such demands, we will quit the board immediately,” the Trinamul leader added.

A Trinamul source in Calcutta said the instruction to not have any truck with the Morcha now had been given by senior leaders.

Trinamul senior leader Mukul Roy visited Siliguri on August 2 and the party’s stand on the Morcha was discussed with local leaders then.

“It was decided that there won’t be any hand-holding with the GJM to form boards. It was also decided that the party would hold rallies in Terai and Dooars wherever Gurung (Bimal) holds rallies,” the Trinamul source said.

Roy had said on August 2 that Trinamul would fight the Morcha “politically” on the issue of Gorkhaland.

In the Dooars, panchayats in the Dhupguri, Malbazar, Madarihat, Metelli, Kalchini and Kumargram blocks are hung with no party with a majority. Morcha leaders in the Dooars said they would hold a meeting on August 6 to discuss the issue.

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