Gorkhaland Movement: The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed the leaders of Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) – Bimal Gurung and Roshan Giri that they should file a petition in the Calcutta High Court for their anticipatory bail within 4 days. Several criminal cases have been registered against them. The bench of Justice Arun Mishra, Justice MM Shantangoudar and Justice Naveen Sinha also said that in their earlier interim order of December 10, 2018, it has been said that the state has taken stringent action against the GJM leaders in connection with the NIA related cases. Will not be, they will continue till the next order.
Senior counsel Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for the petitioners during the hearing, said that there are many FIR registered against Bimal Gurung and Roshan Giri and they are being prevented from participating effectively in the forthcoming general elections. These cases have been filed for political dispute and harassment. In such cases, the petitioners should get interim protection so that they can participate in the election process and according to the law, they can approach to the appropriate court for anticipatory bail.
What Supreme Court said in Gorkhaland Issue?
The bench said in the verdict that according to the strange facts and the circumstances of the case, the petitioners are free to contact the High Court in accordance with the law for anticipatory bail.
The bench requested the High Court to hear the petition filed within 4 days for the anticipatory bail and settle them according to the law.
The bench said, “We make it clear that we have not expressed any opinion on the eligibility of this matter. The interim order passed by us on 10.12.2018 (regarding NIA cases) passed by the next order Will stay. ”
What is the Gorkhaland Issue?
- Gorkhaland consists of Nepali-speaking people of Darjeeling, Kurseong, Kalimpong and other hilly districts of West-Bengal. The people belonging to these areas have high ethical, cultural and language differences with the Bengali community of West-Bengal.
- The demand
ofDarjeeling as a separate administrative region dates back to 1907. But, the term “Gorkhaland” was coined recently, in the 1980s, by Subhash Ghising, the founder of Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF).
- The Gorkhaland Movement is a movement mainly focused in the Darjeeling Hills of West Bengal, which demands the creation of a separate state of Gorkhaland.
- The area covers Duars and Terai region of West Bengal. And is famous for its tea and beauty, which are the main sources of its income.
Why Gorkhaland Movement Matters?
- It is one of the oldest movement in India (began in 1907)
- Things which happens in Gorkhaland will affect India-Nepal relations too. How India treats the problems of the Nepali people of hill origin in Darjeeling will affect how Nepal deals with the people of Indian origin in Nepal, i.e. Madhesi in Terai.
- Gorkhaland has a strategic location, it’s vicinity to the chicken neck that connects rest of India with North East. Its stability is must for India’s strategic and economic interests of the nation.
- Darjeeling is a tea and tourist hot-spot with a high level of poverty. It needs and has
potentialto become the economic engine of the East with a sustainable economic model. But such things will be possible only if there is stability in the region.