KOLKATA, 10 AUG: With the formation of Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) the Gorkha Jan Mukti Morcha seems to have given up their territorial aspirations, at least for the moment. The GJMM has not submitted a single representation to the Committee of Secretaries (CoS) that has been asked to review the “factual basis” of the recommendations of the high-powered committee headed by retired chief justice Shyamal Sen.
The CoS was formed by the state government to pacify the GJMM leadership which were extremely agitated after the Justice Sen committee recommended that only five mouzas in the Dooars and the Terai to the existing area of Darjeeling Gorkha Autonomous Hill Council (DGHC) though the GJMM had staked claim over 398 mouzas.
The CoS is headed by the secretary of the North Bengal development department and includes the IT secretary, Mr AK Subbaih and Mr Ariz Aftab, the secretary, self help groups.
The state hill affairs department had issued the notification for setting up of the CoS on 21 June but even a month after that, the GJMM is yet to submit any representation for review. No other organisation too has submitted any representation
“The GJMM leadership is focussed on the formation of GTA which would give them actual power. So they are not finding time to look into the territorial issues,” said an official. However, the CoS has not been given any particular time frame to submit its report.
State government officials are happy over the turn of events. “This was expected. The issue has died down for the time being. The GJMM leadership will now be busy with the fruits of power and they are hardly likely to think about additional territory. The GTA will have access to lots of funds and they will enjoy the freedom of spending the funds on development in the Hills,” said an official.
GTA: Power transfer
KOLKATA, 10 AUG: The transfer of powers to the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA) is likely to be completed by 31 August.
Detailed guidelines are being formulated so that the process is completed within this month, chief secretary Samar Ghosh today.
According to the provisions of the GTA Act, 57 “subjects” are to be transferred to the newly formed autonomous body. This includes transferring the assets and offices of all the departments excluding finance, home, land and land reforms and the territorial forest areas. sns