In twin orders, SC & HC direct Centre to rush forces to Darjeeling

In twin orders, SC & HC direct Centre to rush forces to Darjeeling

Senior police officials here said they were yet to study the SC order but added that they would press for eight more CRPF companies as the two orders were given by two separate courts in response to two different petitions.

The government told a three-judge bench headed by Justice Dipak Misra that 11 CRPF companies are already deployed in Darjeeling and Kalimpong and they have made a decision to send four more companies to ensure the safety of citizens and to maintain law and order there.

A bench comprising chief justice Nishita Mhatre and Tapabrata Chakraborty on Friday asked the Centre to dispatch within 48 hours at least four additional companies of central forces, augmenting the now deployment of 11 companies, after the state alleged that the Union home ministry was not immediately willing to send more forces to West Bengal. Political parties paid little heed to the plight of the people, Justice Mhatre said.

The acting Chief Justice also ordered the district judge of city sessions court to submit a report in one week in the Madan Tamang case - that how many days the accused Bimal Gurung and others were supposed to be present in court and how many days they were actually present.

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The Centre informed the top court that it is sending additional troops to maintain law and order in the Darjeeling and Kalimpong districts of West Bengal, which have seen agitations for a separate Gorkhaland.

The court's appeal came in the course of the hearing of a plea by the Sikkim government seeking direction to the Central and West Bengal governments to ensure the movement of vehicles on National Highway 10 - the sole link between Sikkim and the rest of the country.

He said the state government could not deploy any additional police as it had done to the maximum, and sought central armed police force for assistance.

The court also said that the CRPF companies being sent by the Centre to assist the State government in maintaining law and order would be deployed in Darjeeling and Kalimpong only.

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