PRADIP LOHAGUN, KALIMPONG, 5 Mar 2014: Gorkha Bharati Bichar Mancha founder CK Shrestha today defended his brainchild, a ‘Gorkha National Satellite Council’, which has been rejected outright by both political and apolitical organisations of the Darjeeling hills.
“I am neither a storyteller nor a dreamer. I am a farmer who cultivates ideas,” Shrestha asserted and added, “The Gorkha National Satellite Council is also a cultivated idea. It is not mandatory that everyone has to sow this seed.”
He had proposed of forming such a satellite council at a meeting in Guwahati on February 23. Speaking at a press meet today in Kalimpong, Shrestha shed light on the essence, nature and structure of the proposed council. He said the concept has come forth after the failure of all the statehood movements and amid fading prospects of achieving statehood.
According to Shrestha, “The satellite council is not against a Gorkhaland state. It is being proposed as a possible channel for the Gorkhas to gain access to participation in the affairs of the nation. The issue is not of a Gorkhaland state, but of the identity crisis of the Gorkha community. Given the leadership that neither understands nor wants to understand the national character of the identity issue, nothing has been achieved apart from futility.”
The noted dramatist also noted past statehood movements have ended in different outcomes because of leaders’ ambiguity over the statehood issue, including a hostile government and unfavourable situations. He stressed the time has come to think beyond a Gorkhaland state.
“This proposed council will be established through parliamentary proceedings and will thus guarantee the Gorkhas active participation in the administration of the country,” claimed Shrestha. “Apart from assuring national identity and security, the council will serve to directly benefit all Gorkhas residing across the country.”
The GBBM founder also ridiculed the Gorkha Bharatiya Sangh’s response to his proposal by accusing Shrestha of trying to overshadow the organisation. He said, “Their (BGP) comment is ridiculous. Those who lack a strong base are afraid of the winds of change.”
Hitting at the political parties that have discarded the concept of a national council without knowing its details, Shrestha asked, “What is its goal? Is the council meant for the overall welfare of the Gorkha community and will it be acceptable at the national level? Aspects such as these and others need to be analysed and debated. Why is this rush to reject outright the concept even without a proper analysis?”
CAPTION: CK Shrestha (File Pics)
Text and Photo by: EOI
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