2017 Darjeeling Protests: A Timeline

Darjeeling is a district in the foothills of India’s Himalayan mountains in the state of West Bengal. The region is famous for producing that nation’s most valued tea, so when tea workers decided to walk off the job earlier this year and bring tea production to a halt, the tea industry watched with anxiety.

The Gorkha are an ethnic minority in India but make up much of the population of tea workers in Darjeeling. At the end of May the West Bengal government mandated that only the official languages of India be taught in schools. Gorkha, who speak a Nepal dialect, in June began to protest for the purpose of having their now separate state of Gorkhaland. This quest for Gorkhaland is nearly 70 years old and is rooted in cultural differences.

Here is a timeline of 2017’s events.

June 15: Darjeeling Uproar Disrupts Tea Operations

July 15: Security Forces Sent to Quell Darjeeling Unrest

Early September: Darjeeling Strike Continues as Gorkha Split Over Decision to End Confrontation

Mid-September: The Last of the 2017 Darjeeling Crop is Auctioned

Sept. 18: 3 Darjeeling Gardens Reopen

Sept. 25: Darjeeling Back in Business

October: We looked at the situation and asked: Darjeeling Wrecked or Reborn?