Update: Any form of public gathering was prohibited in and around Darjeeling. The rallies stand cancelled in lieu of the mass police raids in GJM offices and residence.
Women cadres however staged protests in Kurseong following the arrest of GJM leader Karuna Gurung.
Darjeeling: The women wing of the Gorkha Janamukti Morcha is expected to stage a protest rally from 10:30 am on Thursday. Asha Gurung, wife of GJM chief Bimal Gurung will be leading the group.
The joint rallies will commence from Darjeeling station and Singmari.
GJM authorities have warned that if police attempts to obstruct the protest, it will spark outrage and an indefinite strike might be on the cards.
However, GJM have asserted that it will be a peaceful, democratic display of protest.
Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) chief Bimal Gurung on Wednesday said that the police were working like the All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) cadre and the fight wouldn’t stop even if all Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel of country were sent to Darjeeling.
In a major setback to West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, around 30 Trinamool Congress functionaries have left the party to join Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) and Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) amid protests for a separate state of Gorkhaland.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has branded the GJM protest as ‘abhorrent’ and appealed to the people of the region to maintain peace.
The GJM supporters are also protesting against the alleged imposition of Bengali in the schools of the hills. The agitation arose from an announcement made by Banerjee earlier that Bengali would be taught compulsorily up to Class 10 in the state schools.
After the GJM cadres clashed with the police following their protests against Mamata’s visit to Darjeeling and her decision to make Bengali compulsory in syllabus of schools across the state, the Army was called in to control the situation.
The protest led by the GJM turned violent after protestors resorted to vandalism as they torched police vehicles and attacked policemen.