In the wake of the Gorkha unrest in the Darjeeling hills, at least 43 members belonging to the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) in the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) have resigned. The GTA is a semi-autonomous administrative body formed in 2012 that replaced the 23-year old Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council.
GJM chief Bimal Gurung, who is also the Chief Executive of the GTA said, “Indefinite strike to continue. All-party meeting postponed to 29 June. We will burn GTA agreement on 27 June”. An indefinite bandh was called in the hills by GJM on 15 June.
With supplies running out and vacations starting shortly, boarding schools in Darjeeling are facing a harrowing time due to the shutdown. The GJM has offered a 12-hour "window" to the schools in the Darjeeling hills to evacuate their students safely to Siliguri and Rongpo.
The shutdown has also hit the famed tea industry with the premium quality 'second flush' tea leaves going waste causing heavy losses to the garden owners and putting the livelihood of more than two lakh tea workers at stake. Darjeeling is home to 87 tea gardens and the ongoing shutdown has pushed them to the brink. Tea garden owners feel that they may lose 45 per cent of their yearly revenue.
With inputs from ANI.
Also Read: Why ‘Gorkhaland’ Will Be Economically Viable
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