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Gorkhaland faces humanitarian crisis due to blockade

By Our Reporter

gorkhalandThe Indian government that has been using blockade as a tool to bring its tiny neighbours to their knees has imposed the inhuman blockade against its own citizens in Darjeeling and Sikkim.
When the people of Darjeeling and the surrounding areas launched a movement by calling indefinite period of strike demanding creation of a separate Gorkhaland state in the hills, the West Bengal government stopped the trucks carrying foods to Drajeeling and Sikkim at the plains in a bid to squeeze the movement.
Although the trucks carrying construction materials are allowed to move towards the two destinations, the vehicles carrying foods are prevented from going to Darjeeling.
This has created food crisis in Darjeeling and Sikkim. When Chief Minister of Sikkim Pawan Chamling supported the Gorkhaland movement, Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee resorted to blockade also against Sikkim.
Earlier, India had imposed similar blockade against Nepal in 2015 when the Nepali leaders rejected the Indian instruction to halt the promulgation of the constitution. In 2012, India stopped supply of fuel to Bhutan when the latter tried to establish diplomatic ties with China.
Still India is exerting pressure on the Nepali leaders to amend the constitution.
However, the leaders of Nepal have maintained mysterious silence when the Indian citizens of Nepali origin are facing blockade within India.
When the people, mostly daily wage earners, tea labourers, started facing food crisis, they started walking to Pashupatinagar of Ilam to buy food.
As the vehicular movement is obstructed, the poor people have to walk for five hours to arrive on the Nepal border to buy rice and other food items. However, a buyer cannot take more than 20 kg rice due to restriction.
As the West Bengal Government has not shown any interest in resolving the crisis, more people are sure to be affected in Darjeeling and other areas by the blockade in the days to come.

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