New Delhi, 07th October: A delegation of Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (Bimal faction) under the leadership of party's working president Dr Lopsang Yolmo Lama met Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy on Wednesday.
The delegation raised the demand for a separate state of Gorkhaland and grant of Scheduled Tribe status to 11 Gorkha sub-communities.
Apart from Lama, the team representing GJM were Dr Kalyan Dewan, Urmila Rumba, Bishal Chettri, Bishal Lama, Binu Sundas along with their legal advisor Anand Bhandari. None of the officials from the West Bengal government attended the meeting today, despite being invited.
"When the issue of Gorkhaland Territorial administration was raised the GJM delegation submitted that the delegation was there to discuss the statehood demand and grant of Scheduled Tribe status and not the GTA since the Memorandum of Agreement signed between the Union of India, Government of West Bengal and Gorkha Janmukti Morcha in 2011 was not honoured by the State of West Bengal," a statement released by Lopsang Yolmo Lama read.
According to the statement, the memorandum submitted by the GJM mentioned the "irregularities, interferences and obstacles committed by the state government, thereby rendering the GTA defunct".
"Moreover, all the elected members of the GTA had resigned en masse in 2017 rejecting the said body," it further stated.
The delegation maintained that Gorkhaland is the oldest statehood demand in the country and presented various materials supporting it.
Reportedly, MoS G Kishan Reddy after giving a 'patient audience' assured the delegation that the government would consider all the materials presented before it and would announce the next meeting after speaking with Union Home Minister Amit Shah.
It is to be noted, the Union Home Ministry on October 03 had issued a notice declaring that a tripartite talk would be held on October 07 to discuss issues relating to "Gorkhaland."
Following this, Roshan Giri, GJM (Bimal faction) General Secretary appealed to their allies Communist Party of Revolutionary Marxists (CPRM) and the Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) to send representatives for the meeting.
However, the situation made a u-turn on Monday when another letter was issued by the MHA in respect to the earlier notice, stating that "the subject of the meeting in the heading and body of the notice may be read as 'issues related to Gorkhaland Territorial Administration.'"