Saturday, April 5, 2014


“Confident that people will vote for peace and development again”
GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Democratic Front party president Pawan Chamling today assured to fulfill all demands and complete all pending works in the Shyari constituency of East district.
Mr. Chamling was addressing the public of the constituency at Chongyek and Pabyuk-Naitam today. As per the demand of the people, work related to animal husbandry and agriculture would be carried out in the constituency on priority basis, he stated. He also announced to set up a big Mother Dairy Farm at Bhusuk and assured full support for the development of these sectors in the area.
He assured that the carpeting work upto 14th Mile would be carried out and the problem of sewage system and drinking water supply in the area will also be addressed. Mr Chamling informed that Chandmari will be developed as a Food Street and for the same all required infrastructures will be created in the area along with a pedestrian footpath.
He also announced to upgrade high schools to senior secondary, establish a community centre at the GPU level, a big monastery in Lower Shyari and Primary Health Centre at Saramsa. He informed that an alternate airport route from Pakyong via Assam Linzey and Bhusuk to Gangtok would be constructed while Khopi Kharka area would be developed as tourism destination to promote tourism sector in the State.
With regard to drivers of the state Mr Chamling said, “Our party has always supported the hardworking people and among them the party has done its best for drivers by increasing their purchasing power to make them Maliks”.
It is due to the peace and development in the state that drivers have been able to earn their living without any problems, he stated further adding that they would be the first section to be affected if there is unrest in the state. The dividend of peace ensured by the SDF in Sikkim has created a conducive environment for businesses to flourish, he said.
The SDF president also assured to fulfill the demand of drivers for life insurance cover for Sikkimese drivers in the coming term.
Expressing his confidence on people’s support Mr Chamling said, “To maintain peace, security and development in the state the people will bring SDF back to power again”.
Speaking on the opposition parties, he alleged that candidates of opposition parties are campaigning door-to-door asking for votes on communal lines and this, he said, is not good for the area. Apart from the lack of ideology or programmes, he stated that the opposition does not even have any new allegations. They are only repeating NB Bhandari´s allegations, he pointed out.
SDF candidate for Shyari, KT Gyaltsen stated that the people would again choose SDF for its programmes, policies and leadership. He also placed various demands of the area to the party president.

Lok Sabha candidate, PD Rai assured to place all issues of the state in the Parliament and central ministries. 

Election special..


Intro: Sikkim will go to poll on 12 April 2014. In keeping with the mood, we bring to our readers, on one election per day basis, a look back at Assembly elections in Sikkim since 1979 when the first elections as a part of India were held in the State. The daily capsule will cover one election per day and provide details like the names of victors and runners-up from all 32 constituencies and their respective vote-share. The constituencies had different names and boundaries before 2009 when the new delimitation came into effect. The rest of the country might be undertaking opinion polls and poll projections, but at NOW! we believe that going over past records can help make better sense of ongoing issues and trends.
We hope our readers enjoy this exercise as much as we enjoyed putting it together. We begin the series with Election 1994.

Elections 1994

Total number of voters: 2,17,743 [M: 1,14,315; F: 1,03,428]

Parties in the fray: Sikkim Sangram Parishad, Sikkim Democratic Front, Revolutionary Socialist Party, Indian National Congress, Bharatiya Janta Party, and CPI-M.

Participation in the election process spiked again in 1994. The number of voters crossed the 2 lakh mark and the number of contestants for the 32 seats jumped from 118 in 1989 to a respectable 186. Interestingly, in 1994, there were more independent candidates in the fray than those fielded by political parties. Between them, the six parties participating in the elections had 74 candidates against the 76 independents. As anyone who remembers that time 20 years back will vouch, there was much at stake. And as the results bore out, Sikkim changed after that election.

Voter Turnout: 81.76% [M: 83.72%; F: 79.59%]

OUTCOME: In 1994, the Chamling-led Sikkim Democratic Front was riding a wave of resentment against the Nar Bahadur Bhandari government. This wave had ebbed a bit when Mr. Bhandari was toppled by his own legislators earlier that year and deposed. For the last six months, there was a Congress government in place headed by Sanchaman Limboo in Sikkim. This must have disoriented the SDF strategy which was built around removing Bhandari from power. Be that as it may, everyone in Sikkim was also aware of Mr. Bhandari’s tenacity; he had after all been deposed in 1984 as well only to return with a resounding 31/32 victory in the 1985 elections. 1994 was a politically very charged time and as mentioned, SDF rode a popular wave. People know that SDF won the elections, but as the below table will bear out, it barely managed to replace SSP. Although SSP saw its vote-share halve from around 70% in 1989 to 35% in 1994. Although SSP was voted out of power, this was not Mr. Bhandari’s worst performance [that would come a decade later], and was in fact better that Mr. Bhandari’s SJP did in 1979 when it got 32% of the votes and emerged as the single largest party in Sikkim and formed a coalition government. In 1994 however, SDF did better than SSP and secured 42% of the votes cast which translated into 19 seats, three more than the halfway mark of 16. The party barely made it. The Revolutionary Socialist Party and Independents shared nearly 11 per cent of the votes between them. The jury is still out on who would have benefitted if they had not been in the picture. In 1994, a political upset was pulled off again in a three-cornered race. Congress, although it bagged only 15% of the votes [which translated to two seats] was still a force to reckon with in Sikkim at the time and mixed up the electorate enough to make every vote count. The fight was keen and though SDF established a strong performance in South and West Sikkim, constituencies in East and North saw close battles with margins in the two digits in many constituencies. The slimmest margin was in SDF’s victory at Loosing-Pacheykhani where DB Thapa won by 12 votes against JK Bhandari. An election later, in 1999, JK Bhandari would score an even more sensational victory when he beat SDF’s Vinod Pradhan by a mere 5 votes. These were still paper ballot times and the counting was done, SDF emerged victorious with 19 seats, SSP came second with 10 seats, Congress had 2 and there was One Independent in the Assembly.
This is how Sikkim voted in 1994…

Winner [with party and vote share in brackets]
Runner-up [with party and vote share in brackets]
Ashok Kumar Subba [Indp, 40.71%]
Sanchaman Subba [INC, 38.07%]
Tashiding (ST)
Thutop Bhutia [SSP, 36.04%]
Rinzing Wangyal Kazi [SDF, 33.14%]
Dal Bahadur Gurung [SDF, 51.27%]
Dal Bahadur Karki [SSP, 25.01%]
Chakra Bahadur Subba [SDF, 40.84%]
Padam Lal Gurung [SSP, 34.34%]
Tulshi Pd. Pradhan [SDF, 43.49%]
Birendra Subba [SSP, 33.63%]
Rinchenpong (ST)
Phur Tshering Lepcha [SDF, 60.39%]
Phurba Sherpa [SSP, 27.64%]
Prem Singh Tamang [SDF, 59.48%]
Tika Gurung [SSP, 31.15%]
Nar Bahadur Bhandari [SSP, 51.83%]
Man Bahadur Subba [SDF, 45.46%]
Ran Bahadur Subba [SDF, 62.30%]
Padam Bahadur Gurung [SSP, 32.87%]
Bhoj Raj Rai [SDF, 59%]
Dil Kumari Bhandari [SSP, 35.73%]
Ralong (ST)
Dorjee Dazom Bhutia [SDF, 42.73%]
Ugen Tashi Bhutia [SSP, 25.73%]
Kedar Nath Rai [SDF, 53.02%]
Bedu Singh Panth [SSP, 33.85%]
Pawan Kumar Chamling [SDF, 70.27%]
Kumar Subba [SSP, 26.33%]
Girish Chandra Rai [SDF, 52.63%]
Manita Pradhan [SSP, 36.46%]
Rateypani-West Pendam (SC)
Aita Singh Kami [SDF, 55.64%]
Madan Kumar Cintury [SSP, 35.68%]
Garjaman Gurung [SDF, 57.20%]
Indra Bahadur Rai [SSP, 37.54%]
Central Pendam-East Pendam
Dilli Pd Kharel [SDF, 35.85%]
Sang Dorjee Tamang [SSP, 33.45%]
Kharananda Upreti [SSP, 46.52%]
Biraj Adhikari [SDF, 32.76%]
Karna Bahadur Chamling [SDF, 49.16%]
Krishna Bahadur Rai [SSP, 45.70%]
Pathing (ST)
Ram Lepcha [SSP, 43.40%]
Sonam Dorjee [SDF, 30.56%]
Dil Bahadur Thapa [SDF, 31.30%]
Jai Kumar Bhandari [SSP, 31.05%]
Khamdong (SC)
Gopal Lamichney [SDF, 52.21%]
Ganju Thatal [SSP, 34.66%]
Djongu (ST)
Sonam Choda Lepcha [INC, 40.32%]
Sonam Dorjee Lepcha [SSP, 39.10%]
Lachen-Mangshila (ST)
Hishey Lachungpa [SDF, 45.42%]
Tseten Lepcha [INC, 27.85%]
Kabi Tingda (ST)
Thenlay Tshering Bhutia [SDF, 39.05%]
Thukchuk Lachungpa [INC, 37.66%]
Rakdong Tintek (ST)
Mingma Tshering Sherpa [SSP, 54.54%]
Phuchung Bhutia [INC, 16.93%]
Martam (ST)
Dorjee Tshering Lepcha [SSP, 49.97%]
Samten Tshering Bhutia [SDF, 27.85%]
Rumtek (ST)
Menlom Lepcha [SSP, 43.87%]
Karma Tempo Namgyal Gyaltsen [SDF, 29.44%]
Assam Lingjey (ST)
Tseten Tashi [SSP, 31.68%]
Namgyal Bhutia [SDF, 27.93%]
Ranka (ST)
Rinzing Ongmu [SSP, 37.56%]
Tseten Lepcha [SDF, 37.25%]
Narendra Kumar Pradhan [SSP, 39.55%]
Dilli Prasad Dhungel [INC, 26.26%]
Namkha Gyaltsen [SSP, 47.08%]
Palden Lama [SDF, 39.47%]

VoterSpeak.... What the Sikkim Voter wants from next government.

“More opportunities should be given to the poor from rural areas for better education and scholarships. More preventive measures should be taken regard tuberculosis in the state”.

First time voter SUNITA GURUNG, 19, Lower Rakdong


Golay announces special package for tea estate workers
GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha today held two public meetings in South Sikkim for Temi-Namphing and Ralong constituencies.
While addressing the people at Temi-Tarku, SKM party president, PS Tamang [Golay] made a number of announcements for Temi tea estate. He assured to fulfill all the demands of the public of the area which the SDF party, he said, has failed to fulfill in the past 20 years.
“If the people vote SKM to power then we will take up all the works that the Chamling-led government has failed to deliver,” said Mr. Tamang. He announced a special package for tea garden workers including bonus, medical insurances, enhancement of minimum wages to Rs. 300 and maximum to Rs. 500, setting up of PHC centre at the tea estate, reduction in number of working hours, extra payment for overtime, house registration of local tea workers who are reside within the tea estate and free electricity.
The SKM president came down heavily on the SDF party and its party president Pawan Chamling alleging that the SDF party has ruled Sikkim for 20 years without any programme or policy.
“If they had programmes and policies, Chamling will not be abusing me personally and attacking SKM workers,” he said.
He further alleged that during the last 20 years of the SDF government, Mr. Chamling has only promoted his family business. He also accused the SDF government of dividing the Sikkimese community.
“Pawan Chamling should back his claim of being honest by allowing the CBI to enter Sikkim to investigate the corruption charges against him,” said Mr Tamang.
On doubts raised after former Vice Chancellor of Sikkim Universtiy, MP Lama, was allotted the same election symbol as SKM; he stated that it is solely the decision of the Election Commission and the party has nothing to do with it. Instead, he accused the SDF president of allying with MP Lama.

Lok Sabha SKM candidate, TN Dhakal also addressed the gathering at Temi Namphing today. 

Frustration driving SDF towards violence, alleges SKM

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha [SKM] has alleged that Sikkim Democratic Front [SDF] is resorting to violence due to fear and frustration over the growing support for SKM in the state.
Addressing a press conference today, SKM general secretary [women’s wing] Pabitra Bhandari said that in the past five days the state has recorded numerous attacks on Opposition and SKM supporters by SDF supporters and candidates at difference places in the state.
While strongly condemning these attacks, Ms Bhandari demanded that the SDF party stop such activities and further asked the administration to work independently without bias.
SKM general secretary [legal] Sonam Bhutia accused the caretaker government of abusing the law & order machinery and alleged favoritism by the police. Taking SKM supporters into preventive custody during election time is an attempt to subdue the party, he stated further adding that all the sections registered by the police against SKM supporters are inappropriate.
It was further alleged that the case against the CLC president Ganja Bhutia is totally false and fabricated. 

SKM advisor, KP Adhikari stated that the kind of language used by the SDF president Pawan Chamling in his speeches was inappropriate and unacceptable. He also refuted allegations of the party playing politics on communal lines as totally false and baseless.  

SKM candidate campaigns door-to-door at Ramthang, Tanek and Dikchu

MANGAN, 04 Apr: The Sikikim Krantikari Morcha [SKM] candidate from Kabi-Lungtsok constituency of North Sikkim, Ugen Nedup Bhutia along with the CLC president, Chewang Norbu Lepcha and other party supporters conducted a door-to-door visit today at Tanek, Ramthang and Dikchu where he met with more than 200 families from the area. During his tour, he interacted with the public and highlighted about the party's manifesto for the upcoming election.

Mr. Bhutia underlined that one of the main agendas of the party is to bring the 17th Karmapa Ogyen Trinley Dorje to Sikkim which he assured would be done within two years of its forming the government. He further assured the people that he will not leave any stone unturned to develop the area.

SLP extends support to BJP

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Liberation Party today announced its decision to support the NDA alliance.
The party has stated that in the present political scenario, BJP seems to be the only party which can lead the nation and save it from bankruptcy, acute corruption and soaring inflation.
SLP also views that the long pending demand of restoring what it sees as “illegal and unconstitutional abolishment” of the Nepali Seat Reservation in Sikkim Legislative Assembly will be reviewed and considered by a BJP led government at the centre since, it alleges, successive Congress led governments in the centre have always ditched and hoodwinked the people of Sikkim.

BJP is the only party which has been speaking against the illegal influx of outsiders in Sikkim. The release adds that in the neighboring Darjeeling hills, people are fighting for Statehood and BJP is the only national party which advocates the creation of smaller states and has successfully created few small states in its tenure. SLP has urged voters of the Himalayan tribes across the country including Sikkim to support the NDA alliance led by Bharatiya Janta Party.

SIBLAC and 7 others announce support to SKM

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Bhutia Lepcha Apex Committee [SIBLAC] and seven other organizations today announced their support to Sikkim Krantikari Morcha for the upcoming elections.
Monks of Sikkim, Bhutia Lepcha Protection Force, National Bhutia Organisation of Sikkim [NASBO], Affected Citizens of Teesta, Concerned Lepchas of Sikkim, Save Kabi Lungtsok, and Save Sikkim are the other organizations which have expressed this support.
Addressing a press conference here today, SIBLAC convener Tseten Tashi Bhutia said, “We have been meted step motherly treatment for the last twenty years by the SDF government and they have paid no heed to our demands, encroaching upon our rights, hence we want to support SKM because a change of guard is the need of the hour”.

SIBLAC and 7 other organizations said that they have extended support to SKM on the basis of the issues in the SKM manifesto.


SDF blames SKM for Saureni violence
GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Democratic Front [SDF] today condemned the incident that took place at Saureni on Thursday and blamed Sikkim Krantikari Morcha [SKM] for the incident.  
Addressing a press conference today, SDF spokesperson, TN Sharma alleged that SKM has always propagated violence and the Saureni incident is another example. He accused SKM supporters of attacking SDF workers and vandalizing the party office in the area.
The other SDF spokesperson Bhim Dahal alleged that it was a pre-planned attack in which many SDF supporters were injured.
Responding to media queries, Mr Dahal said that SDF is pursuing the matter of seat reservation for the Limboo-Tamang communities in the state assembly and is halfway through the process of according tribal status to these communities.
He further stated that even though there is no LT seat reservation at present, the SDF party has provided equal opportunities to these two communities and this time again the party has given ticket to one Tamang and 3 Limboos.

Mr. Sharma also alleged that the hidden agenda of Sikkim Krantikari Morcha is to convert the Bhutia-Lepcha seats in the state assembly to Scheduled Tribe seats and thereby secure seats for the Limboos and Tamangs. The SDF meanwhile, he pointed out, has consistently reiterated that the BL seats cannot be touched and that seats for Limboos and Tamangs will be secured without disturbing the BL reservation. 

SDF campaign continues in Melli

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: The SDF door-to-door campaign at Melli constituency has been progressing well under the party candidate Tulshi Devi Rai who is returning to seek the people’s mandate to continue representing them in the Assembly. A press communiqué from Ms. Rai’s team informs that her hard work, through the past five years and during the campaign, has won favour even with the traditionally anti-SDF households. Two households, one from Upper Sadam and another from Kubinday joined SDF in the two days of the campaign there, taking the tally to 80 households since the campaign began. In her visits to different areas of the constituency, Ms. Rai has been highlighting SDF’s work in the State and in the constituency and calling on people to give continuity to the development process. 

Governor felicitates Army expedition teams

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Governor Shriniwas Patil felicitated two expedition teams of the Indian Army at a special function held at Raj Bhavan today.
A press release informs that the function was attended by the First Lady Rajanidevi Patil, Lt. General KJ Singh, GOC Trishakti Corps; Major General YVK Mohan, GOC, Black Cat Division; Geetha Mohan, Commanding Officers, Captains and the team members of both expeditions besides the officers and staff of Raj Bhawan.
It may be mentioned that a team of Six Garhwal Rifles under the leadership of Captain Godara had recently conducted White Water Rafting Expedition on the Siyom and Siang rivers from 04 to 08 March 2014 which commenced from Thumbin on Siyom river and culminated at Pasighat on Siang river traversing a distance of 160 kms. The expedition was very challenging in the sense that the rafters had to negotiate through deep and awe inspiring gorges of Nigging and Marmon, including a 10 mile stretch of massive rapids.
Another team of 10 personnel of Six Rajasthan Rifles led by Major Ashutosh conducted Trekking Expedition along the Singalila Ridge to Sandakphu and Phalut from 18 to 24 March 2014 negotiating the altitude up to 12,500 ft in their trekking route.
While addressing the participants and the officers of the Indian Army, the Governor lauded the courage, discipline, physical and mental endurance of the team members who have successfully negotiated the challenging topography and the altitude of the Himalayas accomplishing the task.

Congratulating the Corps Commander and GOC of Black Cat Division for taking the lead in such adventurous task, the Governor mentioned that such endeavours provide the much needed outdoor exposure to the army personnel and raise their self confidence to face the adversities, the release adds.

SKM campaigns at Barfung

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha president PS Tamang [Golay] reached Barfung today seeking votes for SKM Lok Sabha candidate TN Dhakal and Barfung candidate Pema Wangyal Bhutia.
An SKM release informs that former Congress constituency president Lopzang Bhutia along with his party supporters and SDF CEC member Deo Datta Sharma joined SKM. Altogether more than 325 persons joined SKM, it is added.
While addressing the gathering, Mr Tamang alleged that the SDF party was threatening people and attacking SKM workers because it knows that its defeat is imminent in the coming elections.
He accused SDF leaders BB Rai, Tilu Gurung, Tulshi Devi Rai, Ugen T Gyatso along with Gagan Rai and RN Rai of hiring goons from outside the state. He added that the people of Sikkim will give a fitting reply on 12 April by voting against SDF, the release mentions.  

Pema Wangyal Bhutia and TN Dhakal also addressed the gathering urging for votes in favour of SKM. 

State Awareness Observer visits South District

NAMCHI, 04 Apr [IPR]: State Awareness Observer, Dr Engame Pame arrived today in the South District for his second and final visit to get the overall feedback on the election proceedings of South District. He had a brief interaction with all the Nodal Officers designated on various duties for the General Elections in the presence of the Returning Officer/District Collector South, Prabhakar Verma in the DC’s chamber.
The Observer was briefed about their action report by the following Nodal Officers namely Nodal Officer SVEEP Raghul K, Assistant Collector, Nodal Officer MCMC Kapil Meena, ADC South, Nodal Officer Helpline & Complaint Redressal Tashi Chopel ADC (Dev) Ravangla, Head of Expenditure Monitoring Sunil C Sharma Sr AO, and Nodal Officer for Training Yangchen Tamang DPO South. Other officers present in the meeting were Samdup Bhutia SDM (HQ), Tenzing Denzongpa SDM Jorethang, Bishal Mukhia Deputy Secretary Elections all nodal officers designated for different election duties.
Mr Verma, the Returning Officer presented the latest and complete scenario of the activities of South District concerning the General Elections during the interaction.
In his short address, Dr Pame expressed satisfaction over the election preparedness in the district. Highlighting the task of Media Certification and Monitoring Committee [MCMC], he said that there are certain points to be looked into by the MCMC team like paid news and political advertisements and pre certification of the advertisements and asked the MCMC members to stay vigilant and alert on the same.
Enquiring about the SVEEP activities, he asked the Nodal Officer to create ample awareness amongst the voters through SVEEP activities and work towards increasing the voter turnout of South Sikkim from the present 82 percent. There is no room for complacency till the Election Process is over, said the Awareness Observer and added that all engaged in election duties have to stay vigil till the process is over.
He also enquired about the number and type of complaints received in the control room and directed the nodal officer to take the required action straight away. He also inspected the Control Room and took a look at the complaint register. He informed the officials that although this may be his last visit, he would still be keeping in touch with the happenings of Sikkim. 
He then checked the MCMC office and enquired about the scrutiny of paid news, political advertisements and about keeping a tab on the local cable network for the same. He also briefly attended the training program of Sector Magistrates wherein he was briefed by ADC (Dev) Benu Gurung about training management.

Later he flagged off the SVEEP vehicle for a signature campaign in the premise of South DAC alongwith RO South and other Nodal Officers. The vehicle is set to tour the South District to create awareness amongst the voters about voting activities. The awareness song for General Elections 2014 under SVEEP approved by ECI was also launched today during the flag off. The Observer on his final visit will also be touring some Polling Stations in South before heading for West District.

Lalit Sharma invites Temi-Namphing to back bhoomiputra this time

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Krantikari Morcha candidate of Temi-Namphing, Lalit Sharma today said that he will change the face of the constituency and bring back its lost glory if voted to power.
Addressing the public of the area, he alleged that the constituency is still backward due to irresponsible representatives elected in the past. He urged for votes assuring that he will not betray the people of the area since he belongs to Temi-Namphing.
Mr. Sharma, it may be mentioned here, was the Congress candidate from Temi-Namphing in 2009. He had lost to SDF’s BS Panth.
“Till date, in the last 40 years, Temi-Tarku has not fielded a candidate from this place itself. SDF began its movement from Temi-Tarku but they have not been able to create leaders here,” said Mr. Sharma.
Mr. Sharma is pitted against former minister GM Gurung of SDF and Deepak Kumar Bhandari of the Congress. This constituency of South Sikkim has 12,177 voters.

A large crowd had gathered to hear SKM leaders speak and more than 400 people joined the party today. 

Hem Kumari to fight for India at 17th Asian Games

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Hem Kumari Rai of Sikkim State Karate Do Association has been selected to represent India in the 17th Asian Games 2014 to be held in Incheon, South Korea in September later this year.
A press release informs that Hem Kumari will be part of the Indian Karate Team which will be participating in the Games. She had earlier represented the country in the Asian Championship in 2012 at Uzbekistan. The Sports Authority of India [SAI] will be sponsoring the training camp for the Indian team to be held from 20 April-10 May at Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.

Hem Kumari hopes to represent the country in other recognized international championships as well like the South Asian Championship, Asian Championship and World Championship, the release mentions. She has credited her achievements to chief coach Bidhan Ballav Subba and the state association. The association has congratulated her for the achievement and also wished her luck for all future endeavours.

Engage quizzes at Gurukul Academy and Lumsey JHS

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Expanding its effort to reach out to all the junior schools within the jurisdiction of the Gangtok Municipal Corporation, the Engage Quiz team reached Gurukul Academy and Lumsey Junior High School today.
The quiz, which seeks to inspire students to reduce, reuse and recycle, kept the students informed and entertained.
 The teachers and the students were impressed with the quality and the effectiveness of the Engage Quiz program. Further, the students of both the schools pledged to reduce, reuse and recycle whatever they could in their own ways.

Till date, the Engage-14 team has reached 13 Junior schools with the ENGAGE Quiz program. The target is to reach 16 junior high schools within the jurisdiction of GMC before starting its next intervention for High School students.

DR Thapa campaigns at Upper Luing

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Sikkim Democratic Front’s Upper Burtuk candidate, DR Thapa today campaigned for votes in Upper Luing area.
He met with the public at Baliman in Upper Luing area and assured that once the party forms its government all the issues and demands of the area will be addressed as promised by the party president on Thursday. Pawan Chamling had addressed the public of Upper Burtuk at Helipad yesterday.

Mr Thapa said that the SDF party is pro-youth, pro-poor and has delivered its responsibilities for the past 20 years. He urged for votes assuring a new beginning to the public of the area. 

Police investigating CS phone tapping fears

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: The allegations of the Chief Secretary, AK Shrivastava of his landline phone at home being tapped has been taken seriously by the Sikkim Police and investigations have begun into the allegations with a General Diary being registered in the Sadar Police Station on 01 April.
Speaking to NOW! over the phone, SP [East] Manoj Tewari informed that investigations into the matter have begun and the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited [BSNL] has been asked to submit a report regarding the same. Since BSNL is the service provider for land-lines they have been asked to submit a report as soon as possible since it is election time, he added.
As the matter is very serious in nature, BSNL has also been asked to check with their linesmen as well, he said and added that the police are trying their level best to sort out the problem.

“If any person is found to be involved then we will register a case and take necessary action accordingly,” he stated. Since this is just based on suspicion at present, only a General Diary has been registered at the police station and depending on further information a case will be registered if required, he added.

BJP candidates continue on campaign trail

GANGTOK, 04 Apr: Bharatiya Janta Party [BJP] candidates from different assembly constituencies of Sikkim along with the lone Lok Sabha candidate, Nar Bahadur Khatiwara conducted a programme at Lal Bazaar in Gangtok today, after which they went to their respective assembly constituencies.
A BJP press release claims that encouraging response and assurance of public support has been received from across the 14 assembly segments where the BJP has fielded its candidates this year. Yangthang candidate, Ashish Gurung today toured his constituency, visiting households and disseminating the state BJP manifesto to the voters at Darap, Nambu, Lower Rimbi, Simpheng. The BJP candidate has declared a grand meeting on Saturday at Darap.
Zoom-Salghari candidate Ranjit Ghimeray, also received a warm response from the several hundred households he visited as part of his people contact programme since the past few days, the release informs. The voters raised questions to Mr.Ghimeray and he was able to give them satisfactory answers and assurances on behalf of the party.
West Pendam candidate Amar Lohar was busy for the fourth day in a row visiting his voters door-to-door. He toured extensive areas in West Pendam, Duga, Sajong and Ranipool areas interacting with voters.
Upper Burtuk candidate Ugen Tamang also conducted a tour of his constituency on a door-to-door mode and received encouraging response from the voters, it is mentioned. Gangtok candidate, NG Dorji met people at Vajra and Balwakhani on Thurday while he went on a padayatra today from New Market with about 50 supporters. 
Khamdong-Singtam candidate M K Sharma visited Tinek, Chisopani upper and lower, juice factory area, and Sang Nazitam areas. Lok Sabha candidate N B Khatiwara later in the day addressed a gathering at Singtam today talking about the BJP and its policies and programme, the release adds.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Chamling promises to bring Karmapa to Rumtek

RUMTEK, 03 Apr: The Sikkim Democratic Front president, Pawan Chamling, assured that he will put in all his efforts to bring the Karmapa to his seat at Rumtek Monastery in the next term of the SDF government.
Addressing the voters of Martam-Rumtek constituency here at Shikari-Taar today, Mr. Chamling said, “To bring the Karmapa to Rumtek has been one of the main agendas of the SDF government for the last nearly 20 years but due to some issues at the Centre this has not happened till now.”
“I will put my entire efforts and will make sure that the Karmapa is enthroned at Rumtek in the next term,” he said adding that the Centre had never denied that Karmapa belongs to Rumtek monastery. The delay, he highlighted, was due to some considerations with the Centre. He went on to state that as far as his personal and his government’s efforts are concerned, these have consistently been deployed to lobby to convince the Centre to allow the Karmapa to Sikkim. Those claiming to bring him immediately [as was announced by the Congress some months back], are intentionally misleading the people for political gains by using an emotional issue, he said.
Mr. Chamling assured that all the pending demands of the people of Rumtek-Martam constituency will be fulfilled in the next term. One of the demands as placed by the sitting area MLA and SDF candidate for the next term as well, Menlom Lepcha, includes regularization of land occupied by residents of 32 Mile and also to the people residing at the Power Department’s land at Lower Martam.
In this regard, he directed Mr. Lepcha to pursue the matter as soon as the party forms the next government.
The other demands Mr. Chamling assured to fulfill in the coming term include permanent solution to the problem of drinking water supply to the entire constituency; replacement of old and small transformers to enable 24-hour electricity supply in the area; taxi stand at Zero Mile, upgradation of Samlik Jr. High School to high secondary standard; new road connections; repair/ carpeting of Chinzey and Neopaney Gaon PMGSY roads; double-laning of Rumtek road from 7th Mile Fatak to Sang etc.
In addition to these, the party president announced that top priority will be given to making the area fully organic under Sikkim Organic Mission.
“Every farmer will be provided power tiller and the government will provide price support for the organic produce from the area,” Mr. Chamling assured.
He also promised that the area will be developed as an industrial belt which will create ample employment opportunities for the youth of the area.
Another announcement Mr. Chamling made was the setting up of a proper sewage treatment plant for Rumtek in keeping with the increasing urbanization or the area and the growing number of tourists attracted to the region.
“A huge tourist spot will be developed in Rumtek so that every tourist visiting Gangtok makes it a point to visit this area as well,” he stated.
On the BL and LT assembly seat reservation issue, Mr. Chamling said that his government has always protected the 12 seats reserved for Bhutia-Lepcha community and will continue to do so. Regarding the Limboo and Tamang seats, he said that it will be carried out without touching the BL seats.
Referring to opposition parties, the SDF supremo said that they will not win a single seat because there is no alternative to SDF party for government in Sikkim at present.
Earlier in his welcome address, SDF candidate Mr. Lepcha expressed his gratitude to the party president for giving him a chance to serve the people of the area for the third time.
“I will put my entire efforts towards the welfare of the people with utmost dedication,” he assured.
Lok Sabha candidate PD Rai in his address said that he will put his entire efforts to resolve all pending issues with the centre including seats for LT communities, ST status for 11 left out Nepali communities, the Karmapa issue and various others.

He also alleged that Sikkim Krantikari Morcha was receiving support from outside forces and added that the mastermind behind it is the former Sikkim University vice-chancellor Mahendra P Lama. This, he said, has been proven by Mr. Lama, who is contesting the Lok Sabha elections from Darjeeling, choosing the same election symbol as the SKM party. 


Golay has betrayed the people of Upper Burtuk: Chamling
GANGTOK, 03 Apr: Sikkim Democratic Front president Pawan Chamling today assured the people of Burtuk that the next SDF government will work towards developing the constituency at an accelerated pace since it has lost the last 5 years.
Mr. Chamling was speaking to the people of Upper Burtuk this afternoon as part of his election campaign. Upper Burtuk had elected Sikkim Krantikari Morcha leader, PS Tamang [Golay] as its MLA on an SDF ticket in the last elections. However, due to differences between Mr Tamang and the SDF leadership mid-term, the constituency suffered.
In this context, Mr. Chamling held the former SDF MLA and present SKM leader responsible for the lack of development in the constituency. Accusing Mr. Tamang of betraying the people of Upper Burtuk he stated that the SDF party had given the ticket to him in order to work for the area which he failed to do.
The next SDF government will fulfill all the demands of the public of the area and work rigorously to take Burtuk 10 years ahead, making up for the lost time, stated Mr Chamling. He urged his supporters to spread the message that the election was for the people and not for the leader so the people have to vote for the people’s party.
Mr Chamling stated that there should be change for the good and not to lead the state towards unrest. The SDF president alleged that the opposition party does not have any programme or policy and is terrorizing the people with violence and anti-social activities.
Assuring to fulfill all demands placed by the public of the area he said that the next SDF government would be more development oriented as well as youth and people centric.
He shared his dream to make the youth more capable and to prepare them for the competitive world and to hand over the state to them. He urged the youth to think and work seriously on how they want the state to develop.
SDF candidate for Upper Burtuk, DR Thapa said that he would not betray the people of the area like the previous MLA who, he alleged, had wasted the precious votes of the public by failing to fulfill their aspirations. He added that following the directions and programmes of the leader of the party he would work for the overall development of the area.
SDF Lok Sabha candidate, PD Rai said that due to the programmes and policies and leadership, the party would again come to power. He assured to place all issues of the state in the Parliament and to the concerned central ministries for the welfare of the people of Sikkim.

Earlier in the day, Mr Chamling also addressed the public of Martam-Rumtek in East Sikkim.