Gangtok, Jan 30 (PTI) The ruling Sikkim Krantikari Morcha (SKM) Monday took out a procession here amidst tight security to protest against Supreme Court verdict mentioning the Sikkimese community as ‘immigrant’ Nepalis. The protesters raised slogans in favour of the Sikkimese-Nepali community's ethnic identity as natives of Sikkim.
"The motive behind organising this march was to register our strong protest against wrongful depiction of the Sikkimese Nepali community as immigrants by the apex court, while in its recent ruling it had extended exemption from income tax to all old settlers in Sikkim," SKM spokesperson Jacob Khaling said.
The apex court mention was made on January 13 while ordering exemption from income tax to all old settlers in the state of irrespective of their ethnic identity.
The protestors carried posters, waved banners and walked 10 km from Khangri pump at Tadong to the district collectorate complex in the state capital.
Addressing them, Sikkim Lok Sabha MP Indra Hang Subba said the state government has decided to file a review petition in the apex court.
The lawmaker also said he will raise the matter in Parliament as use of the word 'immigrant' by the Supreme Court has hurt the sentiments of the indigenous people.
"All sections of the society, including myself, are really hurt by the SC ruling. We are Sikkimese and not immigrants and this tag of foreigners has hurt us immensely," he said.
The Sikkim police had made elaborate security arrangements throughout the route of the protest march taken out by the ruling party. PTI COR KDK KK KK KK