History of Gorkhaland movement

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  • In around 1780, Gorkhas invaded Sikkim which includes parts of Darjeeling with Siliguri.
  • Before the 1780s, the area of Darjeeling formed a part of dominions of the Chogyal of Sikkim, who had been engaged in unsuccessful warfare against the Gorkhas of Nepal.
  • After the British-Nepal war, Nepal ceded its territory to the British in the treaty of Segoulee in 1816.
  • The ceded territory includes Darjeeling, Siliguri, the entire terai, Simla, Nainital, Garwhal hills, Kumaon upto the Sutlej, i.e., the entire region from Teesta to Sutlej.
  • In 1835 Darjeeling was handed over by the British to Sikkim but was later taken back by the former for political reasons
  • At this point of time, the India that we know today was not formed and all people in the region were British subjects.
  • After independence, in 1950, India entered into an infamous treaty with Nepal – The Treaty of Peace and Friendship.
  • As per the Article 7 of this Treaty, the Government of India and Nepal agreed to grant on a reciprocal basis to the national of one country in the territory of another the same privileges in the matter of residence, ownership of properties, participation in trade and commerce, movement and other privileges of similar nature
  • This treaty made the citizenship of the Indian Gorkhas ambiguous and it led to the loss of their Indian Identity.
  • It makes a Gorkha’s Indian citizenship a reciprocal one.
  • The present Gorkhaland issue is a fight over this issue.


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