“In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody but unbowed.” – W. E Henley
The word INVICTUS means “unconquerable” and that is the spirit with which we had started TheDC six years ago today. The need for starting TheDC arose in 2013 as the West Bengal government had shut down all Darjeeling hills-based news outlets from publishing news during the then Gorkhaland andolan. Because of which, there were no credible news outlet from where those living outside Darjeeling could get the daily updates from back home.
Back then most of the news regarding Darjeeling and the Gorkhaland agitation were posted by the mainstream media with a huge dose of unrealistic hyperbole thrown in. News that had no basis on any reality, or truth. This is what inspired us to start our page
What started out of urgency – TheDC, a Facebook page has today gone on to become an integral community platform which has not only helped to inform people, but has also provided them with a space to raise “their” voices and be heard.
In a very short span of time, TheDC has emerged as one of the most important news sources for our region, and all this because of our readers engagement with us.
We feel honoured that some of our Breaking News stories, first reported in TheDC have been used and widely quoted by national, as well as international media. TheDC has today transformed from a mere platform for news dissemination, to community involvement, activism and numerous initiatives, connecting our people more strongly with our region.
Today we are happy and extremely proud to state that we have to some extent succeeded in becoming the platform and the “voice” that we had hoped to become.
In the six years since our inception, Darjeeling and its people have witnessed, suffered and resiliently withstood the never-ending socio-economic and political upheavals and uncertainties. The Gorkhaland struggle of 2017 had received support from all over India, but at the same time it got attacked too from multiple fronts, and it is sad, that majority of those attacking the demand for Gorkhaland turned out to be our own Gorkhas.
But irrespective of all the negativities, our people displayed unprecedented courage and unity when it mattered the most – during the elections. 2019 elections is going to be written down as a watershed moment in the Gorkha history. 2019 proved that Gorkhas may bend a little, but we will never break.
At the height of 2017 Gorkhaland agitation, cases had been slapped against TheDC page seeking its shut down, but thanks to all of your trust, support and prayers, at the end of the day truth prevailed and cases against our page was quashed by the Calcutta HC.
Instead of giving up and cowering down we started our website too. All because we Darjeeling and its people deserve a platform that is their voice and not the voice of their paymasters.
However, even today we continue to live under constant harassment. Midnight knocks at the doors of our family members, even neighbours keep us worried.
But we refuse to be cowered down. We will continue to report the truth, and we will continue to become the platform that “voices” and “champions” the cause of our people.
TheDC was started by a group of volunteers, and it is purely run on a volunteer basis. All those who contribute news, articles, poems, write ups, pics, videos do so without getting paid even a single paise. Everyone who has volunteered for our platform have done so out of their love for Darjeeling region and its people.
We have been questioned and critiqued on our way/style of reporting. Therefore, today, we want to reiterate again that we proudly support Gorkhaland statehood demand and our epistemological beliefs, views, ways of reporting all arise and reaffirm the same.
Today as we complete six years of our journey, and enter the seventh we thank all of you for the incredible support, love, care, concerns, suggestions, criticisms and above all trust that have helped us to grow and strengthen.
We take this opportunity to apologize to all our readers, who may have been antagonized with us for one reason or the other, please do know that we take all of your comments and criticisms very seriously and they help us to grow.
We thank all our volunteers, contributors and partner organizations, Sikkim Chronicle, I Love Siliguri, Mirik Ko Sero Fero, The Times Dooars, Voice of Sikkim, Siliguri Times, Dainandini News, The Gorkhali, Darjeeling Times and others without whose help we would not be here today. We look forward to your continued support.
A Special Thank You to the students and Prof. Smriti Rai of the Dept. of Mass Communications, St. Joseph’s College and RJ Samir who have helped us with TheDC Story Series हाम्रा कथाहरु – Their initiative is helping us to share our literature in audio-visual format with a much wider audience, and especially in reaching out to our Youths.
None of this would have been possible without our very Core team of Volunteers. A heartfelt thank you and congratulation to the entire team. It is in your selfless-service to our community, we see a hope of a new beginning, a new tomorrow, a better tomorrow.
In these past six years, TheDC has remained proudly independent and fully run by volunteers. It is because of the committed volunteers that we have never had to compromise on the quality, authenticity and reliability of any news and the critical analysis of the same. We have remained and continue to remain committed towards the formation of Gorkhaland within the constitutional and geographical contours of India.
Information is power, let us make sure we share this power with everyone!!