Kolkata: Elections to the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA), the proposed new development body in the hills of northern West Bengal, will be held July 29, the state government announced Monday.
A notification issued by Home and Hill Affairs Secretary Basudeb Banerjee said the nominations could be filed till July 9.
The scruitiny of nominations would be held July 10, with July 12 being the last date for withdrawal of candidature. The vote count in all the 685 polling stations would be held on Aug 2, said the notification.
The three picturesque Darjeeling hill subdivisions of Darjeeling, Kurseyong and Kalimpong have been on the boil for nearly three decades due to anti-government protests over the Gorkhaland demand. The hills had witnessed killings, police crackdowns and long shutdowns which severely impacted the hills’ economic mainstays – tea, timber and tourism.
On July 18 last year, a tripartite agreement was signed between the GJM and the state and central governments for setting up a new autonomous, elected GTA, a hill council armed with more powers than its predecessor — the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC) formed in the late 1980s.
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