GJM to start collecting tea tax

SILIGURI: Vowing to continue its peaceful movement till Gorkhaland was realized, Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) said on Sunday that it would begin collecting "tea tax" in Darjeeling from March 7 and demanded an auction centre in the Hills itself instead of the plains.

From March 7, Darjeeling tea packets would have Made in Gorkhaland' tags instead of West Bengal, said GJM general secretary Roshan Giri. The tax paid by planters to the state government so far would now be diverted to the GJM fund against proper receipts. The money would be used for the development of Hills, he added.

The GJM leader also demanded that a tea auction centre be set up in the Hills itself. Asserting that there would be no let up in the movement demanding permission to hold rallies in the Dooars "to unite the Gorkhas and Adivasis in the foothills", Giri said CPM was creating trouble in the area with the help of police.

"The Marxists, with the help of police, are throttling democracy by not allowing GJM to carry out its political activities in the Dooars," he said.