By Salil Gewali
October 20th 2019
One thoughtful scholar from Punjab has written on his Facebook wall —
“While our brave Gorkha soldiers are shooting the dreaded terrorists in the hostile borders, in Darjeeling their relatives are being gunned down by the West Bengal Government. What a contrary fact and heartless act!”
It was back in 2017 when the Gorkhaland movement witnessed the unprecedented brutality of the Mamata Government. Is this the price to be paid for being patriotic and serving the country even at the cost of life? Does it come under the laws of the land that those who shed blood for the nation should also be treated apathetically and hurt grievously? I think we have to review the constitution and sit down for serious introspection. I don’t think it is right to hit a person with a ladle spoon who lovingly cooks and serves you the food.
Firstly, it should be borne in mind that the history of Gorkha is not littered with any kind of treachery. Betraying trust is not in the Gorkha DNA. They have never acted like a terror group against India. Indeed, the Gorkha army is one of the most robust “armours” of our country. For ages, the fierce Gorkha fighters have been standing like a rock along the porous borders and terror-ridden POK et al in order to protect the country and safeguard its citizens within. Of course, many leaders admire our warriors — ‘Indians are sleeping because those brave soldiers are not asleep’. Given the spine-chilling situations across the borders, it is not an exaggerated appreciation either.
A rare pride which the Indian Army often takes for having at its disposal 7 dedicated Gorkha Regiments such as 1 Gorkha Rifles (GR), 3 GR , 4 GR , 5 GR, 8 GR, 9 and 11 GRs, is always encouraging and rays of hope. These badass regiments had been most confidently chosen to put up strong fights against the Sino-Indian War in 1962, the Indo-Pakistani War in 1971, Battle of Sylhet, Kargil War in 1999. And, on several occasions, they represented Indian Army to serve in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Siachen and also sent for UN peacekeeping missions to Sudan, Lebanon, and Sierra Leone. How they fought and what ways they earned the unmatched commendations for “valor” are fully recorded in the arm forces archives. Yes, there is hardly a month that goes without a couple of brave Gorkha warriors being martyred while fighting against the enemy.
But what do we feel feel when these loyal army personnel’s children and relatives are accused of having connections with the terrorists or insurgent groups? This is quite outrageous. What an irony that during the present Trinamool’s rule West Bengal has witnessed, and also endured, many horrendous activities that have literally convulsed the state.
There are a swarm of “special citizens” who never hesitate to have a connection with terror elements/groups within and outside. But they facilitated by the all-comforting and forgiving Chief Minister who is popularly known as Didi.
No wonder, it is often reported that many of her loving “voters”, who are mostly ill-bred but over- pampered, were even caught red-handed manufacturing bombs. Such “special citizens” are round-the-clock posing threats to the “indigenous Bengali” populace also — “Baduria and Basirhat communal” clashes, and Murshidabad being the latest in which one whole family was brutally murdered, putting humanity to shame. Here the army has no power to use even a “Lathi” (stick) upon those special citizens while in Darjeeling Didi has given “draconian power” to gun down even the innocent pedestrians.
Well, NIA (National Investigating Agency) has unearthed many such “special citizens” having established secret nexus with other underground brigands outside the country too. It was also revealed to the public that their special academic institutions also teach such kind of “lessons” to the children which themselves are the “recipe for disaster”. Many fear that instead of expanding the “economic investments”, the Chief Minister of the West Bengal is facilitating the “explosive investments” which have almost put the country in dire straits. But, our all-merciful Didi never felt any regret, nor threatened and worried.
By contrast, when the no-nonsense Gorkha populace humbly kneels down and beg her to resolve their identity crises she loses her cool. If they persist with their demands then her administration send in ruthless police forces. Needless to say, the backbone of security of the nation has apparently stolen the Chief Minister’s sense of security. She hurried herself to make a number of caste-based developmental boards. Cunningly schemed, the move was ostensibly to sever the mutual bonds among the several Gorkha tribes/castes and thus plant the seeds of discord in every possible way. The imposition of the compulsory Bengali language upon the Gorkha is the Chief Minister’s long-term plan but the plan was severely criticized. Mamata Didi must have felt the link language Nepali used by Gorkha, which is constitutionally recognized, could act as a great unifying factor among the Gorkha’s castes. The CM must have feared that her objective could not be achieved if the Gorkha’s lingua franca (Nepali) is not undermined at the outset.
Yes, thus West Bengal CM’s excessive passion for remaining in power has amply brought out what is worst in humanity. She never gave a second thought to deploy the central forces in Darjeeling. And consequently, 15 innocent Gorkhas were shot dead. But it did not touch the CM’s heart. Her police force rather pounced upon the poor and naïve women from the villages and tortured them brutally. It is usually expected that one, being wrapped in a “white sari”, and with a “hawai chappal”, should always walk on the path of humility and compassion, not ever being overcome by the materialistic greed and antagonism. But here Mamata-ji has seemingly beaten even the snobbish pretence of a Bollywood’s star by cleverly masking her “true self” with the garb of “sanyaasini’’(asceticism). Many dirty scams by her party men have long sullied Didi’s “lily white sari”
It is apparent that Mamata-ji is steadily eyeing Darjeeling and its adjoining areas as her private fiefdom. It seems a bunch of scholars are now urgently required to educate her about its history. She probably does not know about the Nepal Kingdom (after the Anglo-Nepalese War) was prudent enough to come to have a patch-up agreement, under the Sugauli Treaty 1815-16, with then rapaciously imperialist ‘East India Company’. So, “Nepal Kingdom’’, to avoid continuous conflicts, surrendered about one-fourth of its land to the British. This included the major chunk of the mountainous, hilly and plain terrains. Areas like Darjeeling, Sikkim, Nainital, Kumaon, and Garhwal were handed over to the East India Company. Logically, if this vast area of land, its mountains, its pristine hills, rivers, flora and fauna can be regarded as Indian then why can’t the human inhabitants in it? Why is there so much skepticism and callousness? It is totally unconstitutional. Well, if our leaders still fail to resolve the identity crises of the two-legged native of this land then I would suggest them to meet and consult the bio-scientists and geoscientists, and if doubt still persists, then rush for the psychiatrist.
Now all eyes are fixed on Shri Raju Bist, a very dynamic, prudent and considerate MP elected by the Gorkha people. He and his party BJP have made the solemn assurance during the last election. People are anxiously awaiting the big day when PM Modi will keep his word and declare “Gorkhaka sapna mera sapna: by returning back their land!
When I shared this article with one of my friends from New Delhi, he retorted –
“It is a total injustice to the Gorkha people by our leaders. Such apathy of a pluralist Nation towards those brave soldiers who “came with the land” is unbecoming. Even UNO or World leaders will be shocked when they know how Gorkha are demonized in their own land.”
Incidentally, Indian leaders jump in ecstasy when Sunil Chhetri scores a goal.
India cheers for Chhetri’s outstanding performances and lovingly call him the “Ronaldo of India” Shiva Thapa was affectionately patted on his back by none other than PM Narendra Modi when leaving for the Olympics. One feels, Gorkhas have had enough “lip service” from Indian leaders. Now, what is most important, is a “true pat” on the back of the ‘’whole Gorkhas’’ by fixing their identity crises. Well, Gorkhas came with the land, never like other invaders or infiltrators who have been posing serious threats to the NATION.
Gorkhas are the stout walls of security and integrity for the country. It is time for the Indian government to pay back their dues with gratitude. They can’t bite the bullet all the time under the brutally “heartless administration” of West Bengal.