Kolkata, July 17 (PTI) TMC MLA Paresh Pal today courted controversy when he shouted at three GJM MLAs and asked them to “go back to Darjeeling” when they were in the West Bengal state assembly to cast their votes for the presidential elections.

The incident took place in the noon today at the assembly lobby when MLAs were standing in a queue to cast their vote for the presidential election.

Three Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) MLAs – Saritha Rai, Rohit Sharma and Amar Singh Rai were at the assembly to cast their votes.

The party is spearheading the agitation for a separate Gorkhaland carved out of Darjeeling Hills and the indefinite shutdown called by it entered the 33rd day today.

“Why have you all come here? Go back to Darjeeling.

You people want a separate state and are maligning our government. Go to your hills and cast your vote there,” Pal said.

When state BJP president and MLA Dilip Ghosh went forward to speak to Rai, Pal accused Ghosh of trying to manipulate the voters and violating the code of conduct.

Asked to react to Pal’s comments, Rai said “I don’t want to make any comment. Its for the people of the state to decide.”

Ghosh in his turn said, “It (Pal’s comments) only shows the frustration of the TMC government and their elected MLAs. It is not a way to behave with an elected MLA and that too inside the state assembly.”

Pal, however, maintained that he had said “nothing wrong”. “I will repeat it thousand times if needed.”

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.