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Rediff.com  » News » Gorkha body dubs Centre's invitation 'meaningless'

Gorkha body dubs Centre's invitation 'meaningless'

Last updated on: July 15, 2009 13:39 IST
The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha, which has been invited by the Centre to a third tripartite meeting in New Delhi on August 24, on Wednesday said it was 'meaningless' and would not call off the indefinite shutdown which entered the third day in the Darjeeling hills.

"We have demanded that this tripartite talks be on the political level. The brief letter from a Union under secretary has only given the date of the meeting. It has also not said who would participate on behalf of the Centre and the state. It is meaningless and we will not call off our strike," GJM Press and Publicity Secretary Benoy Tamang told PTI.

"August 24 is also far away. A closer date should have been chosen," he said.

Asked if the NH 31A, the sole road link to Sikkim, was open, Inspector General of Police (North Bengal) Tamta said, "It is the policy of the police not to go for confrontation."

He said the police had not been approached by the Sikkim government or vehicle owners in Sikkim.

Meanwhile, schools, colleges, shops and business establishments remained closed as also most of the tea gardens in the hills.

Presence of employees at state and central government offices remained relatively low, sources said, adding, vehicles also remained off the roads.

A large number of GJM volunteers in uniform marched on the roads enforcing the strike.

On Tuesday, West Bengal chief secretary in Kolkata said the government has learnt that the Centre has appealed to the GJM to withdraw the strike and a tripartite meeting on the Gorkhaland issue was scheduled in Delhi on August 24.

GJM chief Bimal Gurung is currently in the New Delhi.

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