After weeks of relative peace, violence erupted in the Darjeeling hills as pro-Gorkhaland supporters clashed with police near Sukna area today while their indefinite strike entered the 45th day. According to Darjeeling district administration sources, pro-Gorkhaland supporters armed with knives, swords and traditional Khukri, forcibly tried to enter Siliguri with the demand that Siliguri be included in the proposed Gorkhaland.
The police put up road blocks near the Sukna road crossing and asked them to go back. But the agitators broke the first two barricades and pelted stones at the police. Police used water cannons and mild baton charge to disperse the crowd. The protesters turned violent and set afire some vehicles parked nearby.
The pro-Gorkhaland supporters are presently organising a sit-in demonstration on the Sukna-Siliguri road. The GJM leadership has claimed that the police have resorted to firing which was denied by the district administration. A huge contingent of police and security forces has moved to the area to control the situation.
Normal life remained crippled in the Darjeeling hills due to the ongoing indefinite strike to press for separate Gorkhaland state. Barring medicine shops, business establishments, restaurants, hotels, schools and colleges remained closed.