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Protests across Sikkim against SC verdict describing Sikkimese Nepalis as foreign origin

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Gangtok, Feb 1: After the Supreme Court observed that Sikkimese Nepalis were people of foreign origin, Sikkim witnessed peaceful protests across the north eastern state.

The protesters have set a deadline of seven days for the state government to act and ‘rectify’ the alleged humiliation.

Not only Sikkim, in Darjeeling too, there have been protests against the Supreme Court’s observation.

On January 13, while delivering its verdict on the petition filed by Association of Old Settlers of Sikkim (AOSS), demanding exemption of income tax for the old settlers who had settled in Sikkim before its merger with India on April 26, 1975, the apex court had observed that Sikkimese Nepalis were people of foreign origin.

The apex court also exempted old settlers of Indian origin from paying income tax.

On Tuesday, the joint action committee (JAC), formed a few days ago, organised rallies in all the six districts of the Himalayan state.

The JAC has also demanded removal of Sudesh Joshi, the additional advocate general of Sikkim.

Jacob Khaling, political secretary to the chief minister of Sikkim, Keshav Sapkota, general secretary of JAC, Bhaichung Bhutia, president of Hamro Sikkim Party, KB Rai, president of Sikkim Republican Party have all condemned the observation of the apex court.

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