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School syllabus triggers violence in Darjeeling

There has been further violence in the Darjeeling district of India.

A Nepali-speaking Ghorka movement is calling for a separate state to be carved out of the hills. The army has been called out to the area to assist the West Bengal state police tackle the protesters.

It is reported that at least five people have been killed and more than 100 others, including 30 policemen, have been injured.

Tensions sparked into violence by a recent decision from the West Bengal government to introduce Bengali as a compulsory subject in schools across the state, including in Darjeeling.

The Ghorka separatists believe they are being forced to learn a language which is not their mother tongue of Nepalese.

A month-long strike enforced by the movement’s leader left tens of thousands of tourists stranded on the hills of the tea-producing region.

In raids police have uncovered what they claim to be vast stockpiles of explosives and weapons to be used for an insurgency campaign.

Darjeeling has experienced violent clashes for a separate state before. In the 1980s more than 1,200 people died during a bloody campaign.

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