DARJEELING, 17 NOVEMBER 2017: Bimal Gurung, the exiled chief of Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) has released a new audio release. In the audio release Gurung has raised the issue of tea garden and chinchona plantation labourers. He said that these labourers were the most hard hit people during the 104 days strike. He said that the people did not only lost their livelihood but 11 of them lost their lives and hundreds are still behind bars. He said that some opportunist leaders took all the benefits of the movement. The strike that took place did not take place on the advice of the leaders. The strike was called suddenly by Binay Tamang and the people were forced to suffer.
He reiterated that he was against the strike saying, “I had requested Binay (Tamang) that the strike should not be imposed indefinitely. But Binay went ahead with the strike. He said that until Gorkhaland will not be formed, the strike should not be withdrawn. Binay even tried to force me to leave the path of democratic and non-violent movement. He had said that Bengal will not understand the language of democracy and non-violence. Only violence will force them to accept our demand. But I am sadden that all business community and the labourers suffered. But they did not get the fruits of their sacrifice. Time was ripe and Bengal was on her knees it was right then that Binay Tamang and Anit Thapa betrayed us all. Even though they betrayed me, they should not have betrayed the entire Gorkha community. I would like to appeal Binay and Anit on the behalf of the tea garden and chinchona plantation labourers. I am hearing that all the Government officials such as teachers, office staffs etc will be receiving their three months salary. I am fully in agreement with them and that they should receive what is due to them. But the tea garden and the Chinchona plantation labourers should also receive what is due to them. I request both Binay and Anit bhai (Brothers) that the tea garden and the chinchona plantation labourers should also receive their three months salary. You (Binay and Anit) might think that I am jealous of you. I am not. I am just the medium of the people. I do not need an official position to work for the people. However, you (Binay) should not forget your promises. You had said that I will give you salary for three months. But you have not done so. You have continually been cheating the labourers and the grass-root people. You must release the three months salary for these people.”