Gangtok, 16 Jun:

Sikkim Subject Committee vice-convener, Nawin Kiran, has said that the West Bengal government needs to handle the present situation in the Darjeeling hills sensitively. He also criticized the Police raids at the office and house of GTA CEO, Bimal Gurung, on Thursday.

Addressing a press conference here today, Mr Kiran stated that if such acts of suppression continue then the people of Sikkim will also not stay silent. People of Sikkim are with the people of Darjeeling on this issue, he added.

It is a very sensitive issue and if the situation in Darjeeling hills deteriorates then Sikkim will also be affected, said Mr Kiran. The people of Sikkim and Darjeeling hills share the same culture, tradition and language, he added.

“It was an intra-state issue but now it has become inter-state issue and if the agitation takes a violent face, it may turn out to be dangerous for the entire hill region,” he said.

“It is a really condemnable decision of the government to make Bengali language mandatory in schools in the Hills,” he said.

While condemning the decision of the government, he alleged that such decisions are not healthy in a democracy.

Likewise, SSC convener, Pahalman Subba, stated that Darjeeling is burning and the people should not stay silent now. He also criticized claims made by the Police of recovering weapons in Thursday's raid and added that materials recovered were used by people of hills in everyday life.