Gorkha Janmukti Morcha’s (GJM) founder-president Bimal Gurung has returned to the hills after a long time. He held his first public meeting in Darjeeling on Sunday (December 20) afternoon.

In the meeting, Gurung said that he will help TMC to win at least 18 assembly seats in north Bengal in the upcoming assembly polls. 

Bimal Gurung said, “I have joined hands with Mamata Banerjee. We will win 17 to 18 assembly seats in north Bengal. The BJP betrayed the Gorkhas and did not fulfil our promises.”

Also read: Mamata Banerjee will be left alone before the 2021 Bengal polls: Amit Shah

“Mamata Banerjee has assured me that she will find a permanent political solution to the Gorkhaland issue. Therefore, we will support her, “he added.

Bimal Gurung went into hiding in 2017 after being charged under the anti-terror law by the Mamata Banerjee government for the violent Gorkhaland movement. He appeared before the public in October and announced that he was forming an alliance with Mamata Banerjee.

After Bimal Gurung's long absence, he came out in public and raised his voice against the BJP. Political equations in the Darjeeling hills suddenly changed after Gurung pledged support to the TMC.

In the meeting, Gurung said, “The BJP should be defeated at any cost and I will ensure that keeping the chief minister in front of us.”

Also read: After resigning from TMC, Suvendu Adhikari writes letter to party workers

Without directly naming Tamang and his associate Anit Thapa, Gurung said, “They cannot deliver anything despite all the support they have.”

“The two must leave within 10 to 12 days,” Gurung said. Local people said Gurung hinted that he wants Tamang and Thapa to step down from the GTA.

However, the rivalry between Gurung and Binoy Tamang, his former lieutenant who has been heading a pro-TMC faction of the GJM since 2017, has intensified.