Gurkhas to declare independent state in India

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India's Gurkhas are preparing to unilaterally declare independence in a separate "Gorkhaland" state in the area around Darjeeling.

They claim they have been forced to take the step by decades of misrule which has siphoned away millions of pounds of government funds earmarked for them.

The Calcutta-based state government granted limited autonomy through the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council in 1988, but today's Gurkha leaders say it has no powers, and cannot even hire permanent staff. Its leaders wear tweed jackets and hold their meetings in an old British greasy spoon café over scrambled eggs.

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