The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) made a clean sweep of all 45 seats in the newly-formed Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA). It had earlier won 28 seats uncontested, after the two other major political forces – the Trinamool Congress and the CPI (M) – withdrew from the contest. Voting for the remaining 17 seats took place on July 29 and counting was held on Thursday.

The swearing-in of the newly elected members will take place on August 4.

The newly-appointed Union Home Minister, Sushil Kumar Shinde, is likely to attend the swearing-in. The West Bengal Chief Minister, Mamata Banerjee, had sent an invitation in this regard to him yesterday.

Expressing happiness at the result, GJM leader Harka Bahadur Chetri said, “We knew we would win. The outcome also proved that there was no other party except us in the hills.”

“The election result also proved that those who gave statements against us did not do anything for the people. We have to perform the job of the Opposition. We have to analyse our own work.”

He said that education and health would be their immediate priority.

“We have to set up new schools and appoint teachers. Health infrastructure in the hills is very poor. We have to improve it,” he said.

He said roads and new tourist spots have to be developed in the hills.

“We had a discussion with the Chief Minister in this regard. We need the help and full cooperation of the State Government.”

(This article was published on August 2, 2012)
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