An open letter to the Chief Minister of West Bengal
Dear Mamta Dee,
On behalf of the entire Gorkha tribe, I am trying to cater their unheard and suppressed voices to you. In our own state and often far and wide in our country we are given step motherly treatment, how it feels when you being treated like a foreign invader in your own land; it hurts to the core. People across India are curious about the Gorkhaland issue, but most of them do not know about the issue very well and are of the false impression that Gorkhaland is a demand by the Gorkhas for separation from India. The demand for Gorkhaland is a just and moral demand for the creation of the state of Gorkhaland within the geographical and constitutional outlines of India.
This is the “darkest hour of democracy”, where basic human rights are hijacked by the government of West Bengal led by you. In our Indian Constitution we talk about fundamental rights and duties but when it comes to implementation structures and several machineries of state often fail. Now I feel this situation which is going on in Dàrjeeling hills a fight between the Government vs Citizens is a live example. I have to say bluntly that acting just like a tyrannical government; your leadership actually is the real culprit for igniting fire by trying to hurt the sentiments of Gorkha clan by imposing foreign language (Bengali) as a mandatory language to follow in education system. It is said that language is mother which binds community. So if anyone hurts your mother then nobody will be at peace. Similar situation is what the people of Dàrjeeling hills have been facing. It is the language which gives birth to – identity, region, communication, culture, tradition, history, folkways and mores etc. So to preserve our language Nepali people in the hills is opposing the decision taken by your government.
They were peacefully protesting for their basic rights but the government tried to control their basic rights by means of force deploying CRPF and police forces. With such force things seems to go out of hand when these state-forces use physical controller to control the situation. Seeing such alarming situation all over the place I say that we must fight for separate state of Gorkhaland. Now the time has come to raise pen and paper and come to action, media is the best platform specially the social networking sites to raise our suppressed voices for the cause. Hope we are entitled to the fundamental rights laid in the Indian Constitution even in the state led by you…!
Further, undoubtedly it can be said that the Bengal government often exposes its narrow mindedness and has always been showing colonial and discriminatory attitude towards the proposed Gorkhaland region and endures to do so. Late. Subash Chakraborty, a Minister in the CPI (M) Government had said to the Gorkhas “khetey diyechi, sutey chai?” [Meaning: “we have given you food to eat; now you want a space to sleep?”]-inferring that the Bengalis have been benevolent towards the Gorkhas in allowing the Gorkhas to live in Bengal, while ungraciously ignoring the fact that the Gorkhas are ethnic to the land. Similarly, many Bengali scholars [such as Sumanta Sen of The Telegraph] and politicians [such as Dr. Mukund Majumdar and Mr. Ashok Bhattacharjee] continue to call the ethnic Gorkhas foreigners and intruders, which give a sense of insecurity amongst the ethnic Gorkhas – thus, the demand for Gorkhaland.
Apart from this the recent flashes have shown the arrest of the democracy of the people of Darjeeling by cutting the internet connections, disruptions of local channels and inhumane treatment shown by the state forces to the local citizens in Darjeeling hills. We feel that even center government is not showing any interest towards protecting our human rights, so as you being a human being you personally should take interest in this issue. Using forces and being despotic by using guns to bring in peace and tranquility in Darjeeling hills by the state government of West Bengal is not a way out for bringing in the solution to the ongoing war, definitely.
Your government creates buzz always that it has been providing so called “Development “to the hills people. What is the development dee, you are talking about – development of having no good basic facilities such as roads, drinking water facilities, unemployment problems, no proper medical facilities etc? Very recently, it’s been announced that you are coming up with some strategy for bringing peace in the Darjeeling hills which have turned to a war zone. Dee, it’s not a strategy but it’s the “divide and rule” strategy (due to which unrest in the hills will still prevail rather than peace). So we the citizens of Dàrjeeling should not come under any such influence of Development Board as per the tribes. It’s a sheer conspiracy of your Government. You every time flags up the slogan of “Maa, Maati Manusher joy” which means that mother,land is the eventual happiness of an individual…, seems insensitive, But now the Gorkhaland issue which we the hill people is demanding- is considered as an act of terrorism according to you, hence the Bengal government is contradicting in its own slogan. For Gorkhaland we have been struggling since 1907, so it’s not an overnight issue which we the Gorkha from the hills have been fighting for.
Honble. Chief Minister , as a Gorkha citizen of Darjeeling all the Gorkha people have a dream which we have been waiting for long days, months, years, decades etc., to be recognized as a Gorkha Indian , living in a state called Gorkhaland. We still have high hopes till we breathe the last hours of our dream of Gorkhaland. With high hopes we are writing this letter to you as I still feel that you must be keeping faith in the idea of democracy in your heart.
Yours sincere people,
Gorkha & Family
Jai Gorkha ! Jai Hind !
By Swaroop Sharma