KOLKATA: A day after Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) chief Bimal Gurung narrowly escaped from an encounter near Darjeeling on Friday that claimed the life of a police officer, the West Bengal Commission for Protection of Child Righs (WBCPCR) issued a fresh summon to the GJM supremo for allegedly abusing child rights during the 104-day strike for Gorkhaland statehood.
Gurung has been asked to be present at the WBCPCR conference hall in Kolkata on October 23, failing which he would be liable to legal action. The body had summoned him to be present at the child rights body’s headquarters on August 17 for using children in political rallies during school hours on May 29 and June 3 but Gurung remained absconding and in hiding in Sikkim.
In the fresh summon, WBCPCR also took notice of TV footage on September 15 where GJM supporters are seen vandalising a car carrying schoolchildren. The commission stated that it has taken suo motu cognisance of the incidents and found it to be a gross violation of child rights. It also stated that Bimal Gurung has been found repeatedly committing offences that violate child rights.
The GJM leadership came under flak for using children dressed in traditional dresses and wielding khukuris (traditional Nepalese dagger) in pro-Gorkhaland processions in Darjeeling. Meanwhile, police has recovered a huge cache of Improvised Explosive Device (IED), gelatin sticks and other bomb making materials during a raid at Pedong in Kalimpong district on Friday evening. A few persons were arrested with regard to the recovery.