Gurung has links with NE insurgent groups: WB Police

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The GJM supporters reportedly opened fire on cops after the police raided a hideout at a Lepcha Basti near Takvar. The police, however, did not comment on this.

The Commission took suo motu cognisance of an incident telecast live on a TV channel wherein GJM supporters in Darjeeling were seen "ransacking" a vehicle ferrying schoolchildren on September 15. "While Malik died of bullet injuries, three other policemen were also injured", Additional Director General of Police, Law and Order, Anuj Sharma told IANS.

ADG Sharma said the police, which faced "heavy fire power" from the group, retaliated.

"Gurung has procured arms from them", he said. "My son's soul will rest in peace only if Bimal Gurung is shot in the head", Soumen said. "The morning ambush occurred when police, after having specific information, raided the area to arrest Gurung", he said. The police recovered 6 AK 47 and some nine mm pistol and around 500 rounds of cartridges from the spot.

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Gurung was in hiding in neighbouring Sikkim and had tried to enter Darjeeling hills today, Sharma said.

Though Union home minister Rajnath Singh appealed to Gurung to withdraw the indefinite strike in Darjeeling, the Centre must now decide if it wants to involve a "fugitive" in the discussions, said an officer in Kolkata, asking not to be named.

Those who fired at the police should be given strict punishment, he said. The state government should go for tripartite talks to solve the Darjeeling issue.

Gurung has been missing since August after the West Bengal government lodged cases against him under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for his alleged involvement in several bomb blasts in Darjeeling and adjoining areas. State BJP president Dilip Ghosh, while attending a rally in West Midnapore district, said: "We are not supporting anyone in the Hills".

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