GJM supremo Bimal Gurung on Wednesday began an “indefinite” hunger strike to press for deferment of the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration polls and inclusion of a certain portion of land under its jurisdiction.
"Bimal ji is fighting for rights of the people of the hills. Today, he began his indefinite hunger strike to press for inclusion of 396 mouzas under the jurisdiction of GTA," Gorkha Janmukti Morcha general secretary Roshan Giri said.
Gurung has also sought postponement of the GTA election, scheduled to be held on June 26.
He had last week urged West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee to defer the polls until the the Memorandum of Proposal (MoP) submitted by the GJM was implemented in the hills.
According to GJM sources, the MoP, among other suggestions, calls for honouring in letter and spirit the Memorandum of Agreement that was signed in 2011.
The MoP also mentions the demand for transfer of the rest of the departments to the GTA, besides inclusion of 396 Gorkha mouzas as per the procedure laid down in the agreement.
The elections to the GTA, an autonomous body to administer Darjeeling hills formed in 2011, were last held in 2012. The GJM had swept the polls, winning all 45 seats.
Darjeeling, often referred to as the 'Queen of the Hills', has witnessed several political parties over the years promising a separate Gorkhaland state and implementation of the Sixth Schedule, which grants autonomy to a tribal-inhabited region.