Darjeeling unrest: GJM ends strike till next round of talks with West Bengal govt, says party convenor Binay Tamang

Darjeeling: The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha put off the indefinite bandh in the Darjeeling hills from Friday till the next round of talks with the West Bengal government on 12 September, its convenor Binay Tamang said on Thursday.

 Darjeeling unrest: GJM ends strike till next round of talks with West Bengal govt, says party convenor Binay Tamang

Representational image. PTI

The indefinite shutdown in the hills, which had entered its 78th day on Thursday, demanding a separate Gorkhaland state, had paralysed normal life.

"The indefinite bandh will remain suspended for 12 days from tomorrow. Shops, markets, offices, schools, tea gardens will open and transport will be on the road from 6 am tomorrow," Tamang told reporters after the party's central committee meeting.

GJM general secretary Roshan Giri, however, said the bandh will continue. Tamang said the next round of dialogue with the state government on the situation in the hills is scheduled for 12 September.

"If the outcome of the dialogue is not positive, we will convene a meeting on the same day and decide whether to resume the shutdown or chalk out a new course of action," he said.

Asked whether GJM supremo Bimal Gurung, who was not present in the meeting, had been apprised of the central committee's decision to suspend the bandh, Tamang said, "He will be informed." But, GJM general secretary Roshan Giri said the bandh will continue and there is no question of withdrawing it. "Gurung has said the strike will continue and there is no question of withdrawing it," Giri claimed.

Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had described the 29 August talks, which were held at the state secretariat, as "positive and cordial" and said talks will continue to restore peace and normalcy in the hills.

The hill leaders had raised the issue of Gorkhaland statehood at the meeting, but the state government did not agree, she had said.

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Updated Date: Aug 31, 2017 19:37:08 IST