THE HIMALAYAN BEACON KALIMPONG NEWS BUREAU
KALIMPONG, 3 DECEMBER 2017: Battle over the Chairmanship of Kalimpong Municipality Board has begun in earnest with on one hand the incumbent Municipal Chairman Subha Pradhan resigning from the Chairmanship but expressing his ardent desire to re-contest for the same and Anit Thapa and Ravi Pradhan organising a press conference on the same day stating that removal of Subha Pradhan was certain and that they were certain that they would form the new board.
Interestingly, it was only yesterday that the top leadership of Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) who were close with Bimal Gurung, exiled leader of GJM had resigned en-masse from the party stating that there was a leadership crisis in the party and that they would not ally with either Bimal Gurung faction or Binay-Anit faction until the uncertainty over the true leadership over of the party and the Gorkhaland movement was solved. Meanwhile, it was also alleged by these leaders which included Dr. R. B. Bhujel (President, Kalimpong), Sarita Rai (GJM MLA from Kalimpong) and Subha Pradhan (Kalimpong Municipal Chairman) as well as Kumar Chamling, party spokesperson for the party, Bijoy Sundas among others that intense pressure were being exerted to them and their cadres to ally with Binay-Anit faction and that the Municipal Board deemed to be under the GJM leadership close to Bimal Gurung to be replaced by the Board allied with Binay-Anit faction.
Speaking to the media, Ravi Pradhan, Municipal Commissioner of Ward No. 3 of Kalimpong Municipality said that the constitution of the new board was certain. Pradhan said that they had received directions both from Binay-Anit leadership and the State Government that there was an urgent need for the reconstitution of the Municipal Board because due to the 104 days strike development works and civic works had almost completely stopped and that there was an urgent need to restart it again. Pradhan said that he along with 11 Ward Commissioners had stayed at the Municipal Chairman’s office until 4:30 pm to serve him the ‘removal of Chairman letter’ but Subha Pradhan did not come to the office. Pradhan added that since he and his fellow commissioners were not able to submit the letter to Subha Pradhan they would do so on Monday.”
Anit Thapa who also spoke to the media during the press conference said that Subha Pradhan had failed in his duties as a Municipal Chairman and that someone has to take his place. “If one person fails to drive a vehicle, he needs to be replaced by another person who can. We cannot keep the vehicle stranded just because someone cannot drive it,” he said.