Normal life in the Darjeeling hills was disrupted and parts of adjoining Dooars remained tense as the bandh called by the Gorkha Janamukti Morcha, in protest against the police firing at Sipchu in Jalpaiguri district, entered the third day on Friday.
Even though there was a complete shutdown there were no reports of any untoward incident, Darjeeling District Magistrate P.M.K. Gandhi told The Hindu over telephone.
West Bengal Governor M. K. Narayanan, during a visit to Malda, appealed to all concerned for peace while pointing out that a “march” to the Dooars planned by the GJM complicated matters in the on-going efforts to end the political impasse in the Darjeeling hills.
“The march complicates the situation” Mr. Narayanan told journalists. “We want peace in the hills….All parties must behave with a sense of responsibility,” he said.
It won't stop: Gurung
But GJM president Bimal Gurung, said the Manch, which is demanding a separate State of Gorkhaland, would at all costs take out the padayatra to the Dooars. He and his associates would continue to camp at Kumani — close to the border between Darjeeling district and the Dooars region — until they were allowed to move on.
Mr. Gurung reiterated the demand for a CBI probe into Tuesday's police firing, in which two GJM supporters were killed.
A senior GJM leader warned that the situation in the hills could get out of hand if any of his associates, whose names have been mentioned in the first information report on Tuesday's violence, was arrested.