Blog on Sikkim.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

BGP IS NOT A POLITICAL THREAT – D.K. BHANDARI

By Hira Chettri

Media Cell, BGP : 2 June, 2009.

Bharatiya Gorkha Parisangh (BGP) should not be taken as a political threat since this apolitical and social body has nothing to do with politics. Its aim is not to compete with any political outfit but to work for unification of the Indian Gorkhas for the cause of their social, cultural, literary and linguistic development. This is a known fact that this national organization has not caused harm to any organization rather it has directly or indirectly helped them out through different means. The organization has been able to make the national leaders aware of the problems facing the Gorkhas in India in terms of their identity crisis. It has also been successful to shift the paradigm by taking Gorkha’s problems in Delhi durbar from regional level. The BGP is the sympathizer of political parties that are carrying out various activities and movements at their own level to draw the attention of concerned authorities about the demand of Gorkhas.

The above statements were made by Smt. D.K. Bhandari, Chairperson, BGP at Mangal Maity Bhawan, Siliguri on 31st May while addressing a large number of National Executive members of the organization gathered from various parts of the country. Referring to the present movement of Gorkhaland being spearheaded by different political parties in Darjeeling hills, Smt. Bhandari recalled the Nepali language movement and stated that only political efforts are not enough to get a demand materialized. According to her, the Nepali language was recognized at the social level backed by the political strength. She stated that it has now become necessary to bring all the national parties into confidence towards the demand of a separate state of Indian Gorkhas. A national consensus is to be brought to fulfill this demand and for this purpose efforts should be made from all walks of Gorkha society in India, she added. She also appealed other regional Gorkha bodies to come forward to realize the goal of a separate state.

Addressing the gathering, C.K. Shrestha, Working President of the organization highlighted the achievements of the BGP at national and regional levels. He said that a few organizations have been hijacking the programmes and strategies of the BGP and now the BGP workers should claim such programmes as their brainchild. Due to the absence of assertiveness the BGP workers have become faceless in the present Gorkha society despite their tremendous contribution towards the cause of Gorkhas in India, he stated. He also claimed that the national leaders are aware of the role of BGP to shift the demand of separate state from state to central level. Talking about the demand of Gorkhaland, he said that the BGP is of the view that this issue should not be addressed by any single political party to fulfill vested interest but it is to be addressed by the nation itself considering the injustice the Gorkhas have been facing since last several years despite their selfless contribution towards the independence, security, building and development of this nation. According to him, the demand of Gorkhaland is related with the identity crisis of over 1.25 million Gorkhas in India and it should be discussed at national level by all the national leaders as the Gorkhas do not want sympathy from anybody. He also stated that the nationalism is the first priority of the Gorkhas in India and they would never blackmail the nation to fulfill their demand. He also appealed the BGP workers to understand the views of other organizations working for similar causes and not over-react on them.

Sukhman Moktan, Secretary General highlighted the organizational achievements of the BGP in the last three years. He disclosed that the new central committee of the BGP would be formed in October this year during the Maha-Adhiveshan of the organization which will be held at Siliguri. According to him, the new committee will have to face more challenges in various aspects in view of the present political situation. Referring the prevailing national trend of youth’s involvement in political sphere, Moktan opined that the BGP should ensure participation of more youths in its future course of action and also highlighted the necessity of bringing the ideology of the BGP at grass root level. He claimed that the BGP has been able to make Indian Gorkhas aware about the unification at national level by way of organizing leadership building workshops in different parts of the country. He suggested that the BGP should now prepare a list of whole time workers and utilize their services in organizational affairs.

About the demand of Gorkhaland, Moktan disclosed that the BGP central leadership has decided to camp at New Delhi during the month June-July and hold discussion with the present UPA Govt. and opposition parties as well about the seven point charter of demands of the organization which tops the creation of a separate state for Indian Gorkhas. He also directed the office bearers of state and district level committees of the BGP particularly from Darjeeling, Sikkim, Dooars areas to keep themselves in readiness to rush for New Delhi in a short notice to hold discussion with the national leaders about the long pending demands of the organization.

Madhav Karki, Councillor. Bodoland Territorial Council suggested the BGP leaders to form a political cell of the organization to look after the related subjects including demand of Gorkhaland and viewed that the Gorkhas should now field their own candidates from respective constituencies in future elections. B.B.Chhetri (President, Meghalaya State Committee) also echoed his view and emphasized on the need of an effective cell to sort out the political issues.

Col (Retd) D.R. Gurung, Chairman, Financial Committee suggested that transparency should be maintained in the organizational transactions. He also disclosed that a large number of BGP workers are now working in political parties and they must bear courage to oppose any anti-BGP move of their parties. Gurung, who is heading Bharatiya Gorkha Bhutpurva Sainik Morcha, Siliguri claimed that he had challenged the party leaders who had framed unnecessary charges against the BGP leadership circle in the recent past. Gurung also requested the BGP central leaders to make him free from the organizational burden as he is now engaged in political activities.

The meeting was followed by an interactive session which was conducted by Munish Tamang, Secretary, Central Programme Cell, New Delhi.

The other leaders to address the meeting were Rudra Adhikari, Treasurer, Buddhiman Pradhan, Joint Secretary General (Admin), B.B. Chhetri (President, Meghalaya State), Nityananda Upadhyaya (Secretary, Assam State), Binod Bishta (Secretary, Manipur State), S. Pandey (Secretary, Sikkim State), Shivlal Alley (Secretary, Uttarakhand State), Jiwan Gurung (Secretary, Darjeeling), C.K. Pradhan, Dy. S.P (Retd) (President, Kalimpong), Binod Prakash Sharma (Secretary, Kurseong), K.N. Pradhan (President, Siliguri) and Arun Acharya (Social Worker). They highlighted the organizational activities and achievements of the BGP in respective areas and also discussed about the future course of action of the organization. Other prominent BGP leaders present in the meeting were Smt. Latika Joshi (Vice President), Bhupendra Adhikari (Secretary, Zone IV), Dr. Raja Singh Limboo (Member, Policy Making Body), Col (Retd) S.K. Mukhia (Office Secretary, Siliguri), Brig (Retd) N.B. S. Bishta (President, Uttarakhand State), S.K. Chhetri (President, Mangal Maity). Apart from them, the social thinkers of Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Sikkim, Dooars, Siliguri were also present in the meeting as observers.

This was the last National Executive meeting of the present central committee of the BGP as its term is going to be expired in October this year and a new central committee is to be formed then.

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When i started my blog on Sikkim way back in 2007, i had it clear on my mind that this blog shall help people look out for knowledge on Sikkim. I always wanted a knowledge house about Sikkim, its past, present and future. I do not know over the years how much did i succeed but my determination to let other understand my Sikkim is always giving me a push. with regards Shital Pradhan (himalayanreview@gmail.com)

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