High drama at Bagdogra airport over Bimal’s return news, two aides detained

Police detains one person who had come from Delhi purportedly carrying legal documents of Bimal Gurung. SE Pic
Fri, Apr 5, 2019

PRASHANT ACHARYA
SILIGURI:
High drama unfolded outside Bagdogra airport here today after news of absconding GJM leader Bimal Gurung’s return to the hills spread like wild fire. Huge police force was deployed at Bagdogra airport terminal area and on two entry points from the highway to restrain Gurung’s supporters to enter airport for welcoming.
Gurung, who has been absconding since 2017 after being slapped with several criminal cases, was touted to arrive at Bagdogra today with his close aide Roshan Giri, who is also fugitive since then.
Police officials led by Darjeeling IG Manoj Verma and other top officials were present at the airport. Gurung’s supporters in large numbers who had come from various areas of Darjeeling hills, Terai and Dooars regions were pushed back from the entry gate of the airport.
Several vehicles carrying black flags were also seen along the highway to protest the return of Bimal Gurung. GJM Binoy Tamang faction leaders including Mahila Morcha chief Tshering Dahal, TMC hill leader Binny Sharma had reached airport to show their protest on arrival of Gurung.
Kavita Tamang, a Gurung faction supporter, who reached Bagdogra all the way from Indo-Bhutan border Jaigaon to welcome Gurung said, “This is undemocratic and domination of West Bengal government. Are we criminals or terrorists? We are common people so why are police barring us from entering the airport area where as the Binoy Tamang and TMC men are allowed. This is too much and shows that how insecure is Mamata Banerjee’s TMC government to win the election.”
Gurung’s close aide Ramesh Alley was also not allowed to enter the airport area. He said, “Bimal Gurung is not coming here for any election campaign. He was coming to follow the legal proceedings as directed by the Supreme Court. The Bengal police has deployed such a huge force at Bagdogra area and restricted all followers of Gurung to enter the airport area which is not democratic and illegal.”
Gurung was supposed to land at Bagdogra airport at 2:25 pm in Indigo flight but he cancelled the visit after his party leaders asked him not to board the plane fearing his arrest by police at Bagdogra.
Police detained two alleged Bimal faction supporters Yogendra Pradhan and Roshan Rai after landing from New Delhi flight at Bagdogra airport. Both are said to have been sent by Gurung with his legal documents to be submitted at Jalpaiguri court.
Soon after Gurung’s visit was cancelled, a hasty press conference was called by his faction spokesperson B.P. Bajgain at a private hotel in Khaprail near Siliguri.
Bajgai said, “Bimal Gurung, Roshan Giri and the other GJM leaders were stopped by the central committee to board plane in order to avoid the probable ‘violence’ that might have taken place on their arrival. We came to know from our sources that anything might happen on the way if Gurung is taken to hills.”


Area: 7096 Sq Km
Capital:Gangtok
Altitude: 5,840 ft
Population: 6.10 Lakhs
Topography: Hilly terrain elevation from 600 ft. to over 28,509 ft above sea level
Climate:
Summer: Max- 21°C ; Min – 13°C
Winter: Max -13°C ; Min – 0.48°C
Rainfall: 325 cm per annum
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