The Gorkha Janamukti Morcha (GJM) called an indefinite shutdown of government and Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) offices in Darjeeling hills from Monday.
The GJM, however, exempted schools, colleges, transport, hotels from the purview of the shutdown and said banks will remain open only twice a week.
“There will be indefinite shutdown in GTA offices, banks and government offices from Monday. The banks will open twice a week for public transactions. We have exempted schools, colleges, transport, hotels from the purview of the strike,” GJM general secretary Roshan Giri told reporters here after the organisation’s central committee meeting.
He also announced that all the signboards written in Bengali will be removed from Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Kurseong, Mirik, Siliguri, Terai and Dooars region and signboards only in English and Nepali would be allowed.
“We will not attend GTA offices. Thrice a week we will organize torch rallies in the hills,” he said.
GTA and government offices will, however, remain open for four days from June 27.
Earlier in the day, GJM supremo Bimal Gurung said that he was not for strikes.
Gurung also called for “non-cooperation” movement with the state government and accused it of looting resources from the hills and depriving it of basic amenities.
He said that agitation in Darjeeling hills will not stop until and unless a separate Gorkhaland is formed.
“If TMC wants to play with fire they will regret it,” he said.
“We will appeal to the people not to cooperate with the state government. It is taking away so much resources from the hills and what are the people of the hills getting? We are getting nothing.
“This has to stop. We will fight for our freedom and will not allow the divisive politics in the hills,” Gurung said.
The GJM leadership today wrote to the Centre urging it to look into the Gorkhaland demand