Darjeeling: Pollice officer killed in clashes with GJM faction

Oct 16, 2017, 00:45
Darjeeling: Pollice officer killed in clashes with GJM faction

A major fire broke out on Sunday morning in fugitive GJM chief Bimal Gurung's village at Patlebas in the restive Darjeeling hills, destroying several houses, many of which belonged to his loyalists, police said.

Siddhinath Gupta, additional director general of police, said West Bengal police sub-inspector Amitabha Malik was killed and four police personnel were severely injured after supporters of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) fired at a police party on the lookout for Gurung. They were rushed to a local hospital, where Malik succumbed to injuries.

The incident comes soon after a sub-inspector was killed in a clash between police and alleged supporters of Gurung.

The GJM claimed one of its activists was also killed in the exchange of fire.

"We told him that the centre must intervene as soon as possible, and call us for talks on all the pending issues, including Gorkhaland", he said.

Gurung was in hiding in neighbouring Sikkim and had tried to enter Darjeeling hills today, Sharma said.

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They were searching for the head of the party Bimal Gurung, who has been on the run since government prosecutors brought terrorism charges against him over a 104-day protest that crippled the region and left almost a dozen people dead. Police also recovered a huge a cache of arms following the clash.

Restrictions have been imposed on entry to the village, a Gurung stronghold, and police are conducting raids in the area.

Gurung has been on the run for quite some time, with the state police slapping cases under the stringent Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, as also for waging war against the government and organising terrorist camps.

Tamang has been made the chairman of Board of Administrators of the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration by the state's Mamata Banerjee government.

State Tourism Minister Gautam Deb alleged that some miscreants were trying to spark trouble in the hills.

The GJM had on September 26 announced the withdrawal of its indefinite shutdown in the northern West Bengal hills.

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