Violence erupted in some parts of the Darjeeling Hills on Thursday where life was hit due to a 24-hour strike by the students’ wing of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM). The strike, called by the Gorkha Janmukti Vidyarthi Morcha (GJVM), was to protest against the refusal of the authorities to allow its supporters to hold a pro-Gorkhaland rally in Siliguri and other parts of the Dooars earlier this month.
GJM supporters went on the rampage in Kurseong by setting ablaze the residence of Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) MLA Shanta Chettri, torching two vehicles and damaging a few others belonging to the police after laying siege and ransacking the local thana, reports reaching here said.
The trouble arose as news spread that some GJVM activists were held for blocking the national highway leading to Siliguri.
Their colleagues in Kurseong attacked the residence of the GNLF president of the Kurseong unit.
Amid the developments, the GJM leadership has given a call for a 24-hour strike on Friday in protest against the alleged failure of the State government to ensure adequate protection at the Silda camp, where 24 jawans of the Eastern Frontier Rifles were killed in a Maoist attack on Monday. Many of the jawans hailed from Darjeeling district.
“The State police failed to provide adequate protection at the camp — earlier abandoned by the Central Reserve Police Force as the location was found unsuitable,” GJM general secretary Roshan Giri told The Hindu over telephone from Darjeeling.