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Bimal Gurung to meet Union minister on tribal status issue

Darjeeling : Gorkha Janmukti Morcha president Bimal Gurung is slated to head for Delhi on August 27 to meet Union tribal minister Jual Oram and further pursue the issue of granting tribal status to 11 communities of the hills. The GJM wants the government to table a Bill in Parliament in this year’s winter session. Gurung had first placed the demand before Oram on July 12 of this year. “I will be in Delhi from August 27 to 29 and meet the Union tribal minister to urge him to expedite the issue,” he said. The GJM chief announced this on Thursday in Darjeeling at a meeting of the Gorkha Janjati Kalyan Samiti that represents the 11 communities. Gurung had been invited to the meeting as a special speaker wherein he said, “We are struggling for achieving tribal status as we have been agitating on the individual level. 

Now it is high time to bind together as a single force for the benefit of everyone. We must not fight among ourselves as this is exactly what the state government wants.” Gurung added representatives of all the 11 communities will be accompanying him to the national capital. “We are doing our job and want community representatives to see how the GJM is doing it and how much progress has been made.” Yoga guru Baba Ramdev has reportedly given a personal invitation to the GJM chief for a programme in Delhi on August 28. The following day, Gurung is expected to lay the foundation stone for a Gorkha Bhawan in Saket. The Bhawan is being built at a cost of Rs17 crore and will get completed in the next 18 months.

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